Abdula pushes for food production-related R4D in Catanduanes

DA-Bureau of Agricultural Research (DA-BAR) director Dr. Sailila E. Abdula, in his visit to Catanduanes on 21 September 2022, enjoined research for development (R4D) workers from DA-Catanduanes Hilly Upland Development Station (CHUDS) and Catanduanes State University (CatSU) to pursue R4D projects and activities geared toward boosting food production in the island province. 

“At the end of this discussion, we really hope that we become partners. Ilan lamang ito–pwedeng [applied] research, pwede din sa upgrading [of facilities]. We bring you these opportunities for us to help, lalo na ‘yong malalayong area…I hope you get something out of it, sa mga napag-usapan natin, para makapag-contribute tayo sa food production. And remember, the direction of the President now is [food] sufficiency–we produce our own,” said director Abdula during the discussion. 

He also mentioned the bureau’s efforts in reaching out to relatively small universities and research stations in far-flung provinces toward creating significant impact and contribution to the department’s goals. 

The first in recent years, the director’s visit in the province served as an avenue for agriculture and fisheries researchers in the province to learn about the national and regional R4D priorities of the bureau. In response, the researchers discussed their R4D initiatives and plans and highlighted their efforts to cater to the agricultural needs of the locality. 

The DA-BAR team also shared with CatSU officials and faculty-researchers the Agricultural Competitiveness Enhancement Fund’s Research and Development Grant Program, which caters to the state universities and colleges for their pursuits on agriculture and fisheries technology commercialization and R4D facilities upgrading. 

The bureau chief also had the opportunity to look into the ongoing agriculture and fisheries R4D projects and facilities in both the main and Panganiban Campus of CatSU, located in Sta. Ana, Panganiban, Catanduanes. Further, the bureau team provided recommendations in line with prioritizing R4D projects and activities that could lower production cost, thereby increasing productivity and inspiring and boosting farmers’ interest in food production.

In the meeting with Dr. Ramon Felipe A. Sarmiento, CatSU-vice president for Research, Extension and Production Affairs and dean L. Medrano, DA-CHUDS superintendent, director Abdula also underscored the importance of R4D program complementation between and among CatSU, DA-CHUDS, and the local government units to further strengthen the programs and technology service delivery toward boosting the competitiveness of farmers and fisherfolk in the island. (### Mara Shyn M. Valdeabela-Pacunana)