Empowering Negrense farmers

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Thursday, May 1, 2014

A TOTAL of 167 small-scale farmers from Silay City have graduated from the three-month training program called “Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan (KSK).”

Their graduation ceremony was held at SM City Bacolod yesterday.

The program is a project of SM Foundation, Inc. (SMFI) in cooperation with HARBEST Agribusiness Corporation, Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), and the Silay City government.


The KSK program aims to empower small-scale farmers on improved and doable agricultural technology, specifically in organic farming.

The farmers have trained for 12 weeks with HARBEST at a demo farm in Barangay Patag, Silay City. The season-long module trains them on the commercial production of high-value crops such as vegetables and fruits.

Each session tackles the sequential education of farming starting from planning the farm, seeding, proper ventilation, water management, pest control, infection management, greenhouse and harvesting.

Following the course module usually results in quality yield, translating into higher profits for the farmers and food sufficiency in the province.

SMFI and HARBEST have jointly implemented KSK Projects all over the Philippines for the past seven years.

The training in Barangay Patag is the 64th batch adopted into the program.

Incidentally, the first KSK training was launched in Barangay Handumanan in Bacolod City in 2007. It was a project tie-up with the Negros Economic Development Foundation (NEDF).

At the graduation rites yesterday, Silay Mayor Jose Montelibano, through his representative Andrew Javelona, congratulated the batch for their hard work and dedication in completing the course and acknowledged the program’s valuable contribution to the city’s pursuit of sustainable development and to the organic movement advocated in the province.

The diplomas were personally given to the graduates by SMFI assistant vice president Cristie Angeles. She was happy that the farmers are now empowered by the new knowledge from the technology transfer, and the values and entrepreneurial preparation of DSWD.

Angeles also said that she looks forward to them being active in the supply chain – whether directly or indirectly – that would have their products sold through the SM Food Group (SM Supermarket, Savemore and SM Hypermarket) and other markets.

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on May 01, 2014.


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