Fostering Agriculture and Rice Marketing by improved Education and Rural Advisory Services (FARMERS)
The project has three components.
Component 1: Better Rice Production (strengthening of the training capacities of local agricultural service providers and provision of adapted and improved techniques for smallholder farming systems)
BRIA in cooperation with its private partners, the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice), the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) and the Department of Agriculture (DA) will train 200 agricultural extension workers (AEWs), local farmer technicians, farmer leaders and private rural service providers from 13 municipalities through the FARMERS schools which will offer modular courses on basic agriculture and rice and rice-based integrated farming systems.
The local extension service and other service providers will subsequently train farmers in supported Local Government Units (LGUs) in on-farm learning (immersion) sessions. The target group is planned to be some 8,000 small-scale rice farmers (between 0.5 and 5 hectares).
The project is being implemented in Region 8 “Eastern Visayas”, Region 6 “Western Visayas” and Region 3 “Central Luzon” on the Islands of Leyte and Panay, and Aurora Province. Leyte, Panay and Aurora are regional hotspots for food insecurity caused by low productivity as most households rely on agriculture and poverty incidence is much higher than the national average. The project could expand to further provinces on a later stage for up-scaling.
Better Market Linkage (promotion of market-oriented rice production, entrepreneurship and market linkages) Support of farmer organizations’ formation, improvement of market and price information as well as linking farmers to retailers are the main activities under this component.
Policy dialogue and knowledge management to share knowledge on lessons learnt and good practices with public institutions, private sector and civil society