by Vanessa B. Ramos
The Office of the Provincial Agriculturist (OPA) supported the National Year of Rice (NYR) celebration on January 28, 2013 at Kammaranan Hall, Capitol Hills, Tuguegarao City.
The activity launched by the Department of Agriculture, supports the nationwide program which aims to achieve rice self-sufficiency in the country in 2013 onwards.
This was graced by Board Member Maria Olivia Pascual, Board Member Mila Catabay-Lauigan, Assistant Secretary to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan Evelyn De Guzman, various municipal Agriculturists, provincial government employees, media, and tricycle drivers.
Provincial Agriculturist Mildred S. Abella elaborated on the objectives of NYR. “The NYR program aims to achieve rice self-sufficiency in 2013, promote better health among rice consumers, and to improve the income of farmers,”Abella said.
“We are encouraging every Cagayano to be responsible rice consumers by eating just the right amount of rice, not wasting rice, and eating other sources of carbohydrates. We also encourage rice producers to be responsible rice farmers by adapting new technologies to improve their crops,” Abella added.
The NYR program encourages every individual to consume the right amount of rice, to find alternative food staples for better health and to eat brown rice.
According to a study by the Department of Agriculture (DA), Filipinos are eating too much rice with an average of four and a half cups (4 ½) a day when three (3) cups are already enough. The study also revealed that every individual wastes about two (2) tablespoons of cooked rice or nine (9) grams of uncooked rice daily.
The Provincial Government of Cagayan (PGC) through OPA also tapped different media entities as well as local residents to help promote the activity.
The office also conducted slogan-making contest in Ilocano and Ybanag. Chosen among the entries were “Bagga immuguran, tapenu makakan si Ifan” by Digna Pagulayan as the 1st prize; “Bagga immuguran, aru nga tolay y mapakan by Rodel Ordillos as the 2nd prize. Ilocano category was won by Racquel Puruganan of Human Resource and Management Office with “Inapoy a matimbeng, biag a masimbeng” as 1st prize; and Pedro Cumilang, OJT at the Sangguniang Panlalawigan with “Bagas nga ilalaen, biag ti mataraken” as the 2nd prize. First prize and 2nd prize winners received P2,500.00 and P1,500.00,respectively .
The National Year of Rice was proclaimed by President Benigno Aquino III under Proclamation No. 494 on October 18, 2012.
Cagayan is the first province to launch the National Year of Rice Program.