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LOOKING BACK FEBRUARY. ARMM introduces Green Super Rice to farmers in the region

Cotabato City (23 February 2015) – The Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) will introduce to farmers in the region the Green Super Rice (GSR) for commercial production following a successful harvest at a 2-hectare demonstration farm in Maguindanao.

ARMM Agriculture Secretary Macmod Mending Jr. said they are “pushing for the commercialization of this variety for increased productivity and better income for our farmers.”

The GSR has been developed by the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences and the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) to be climate resilient and resistant to rice diseases such as sheath blight, bacterial leaf streak viruses and false smut.

The said variety can lead to more stable yield with lesser fertilizer and pesticide inputs.

ARMM currently ranks 18th in terms of rice production in the country with a 3.1 metric tons per hectare yield. Mending said they expect to increase this to 7.7 metric tons per hectare with the introduction of the GSR.

The region’s Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) has distributed GSR seeds to 500 farmers during the rice farmers’ field day and harvest festival held in Sultan Mastura town, Maguindanao last week.

The GSR is part of DAF-ARMM’s P3-million technology-driven programs that include the Rice Crop Manager (RCM), Philippine Rice Information System (PRISM) and the Next Generation (Next Gen). The programs are designed to help increase the productivity of rice farmers in the region with the use of modern technology in farming.

The RCM is an internet-based application that provides recommendations on nutrients, pest, weeds, water management based on the variety of input and site-specific conditions. PRISM is a system provides data and maps out rice growing areas affected by natural calamities and pest outbreaks. The NextGen project involves the introduction and adoption of high-yielding rice varieties and hybrids, such as the GSR, with tolerance to biotic and abiotic strain in rice production.

DAF-ARMM also provided a P1.6 million-worth combined harvester to the farmers in Sultan Mastura. The machine can simultaneously reap, harvest and thresh rice.

“ARMM aims to address the challenges on farming by taking advantage of new technologies that increases farm productivity, and making them available even to the poor farmers in the region,” said Mending. (Bureau of Public Information)
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