The Department of Agriculture (DA) has extended P1.8 million to four associations of abaca farmers in Agusan del Sur to improve their production.
According to DA, some 226 abaca farmers will improve their production of abaca through the farm machinery support provided by the DA-Caraga under the Special Area for Agricultural Development (SAAD) Program.
The abaca farmers from Sitio Cosep, Barangay Bayugan 3, Rosario; Barangay Culiram, Talacogon; and Barangay Muritula and Cecilia from the municipality of San Luis received six portable spindle-stripping machines and three hand tractors.
The stripping machine is a modern and efficient way of extracting abaca fiber that provides farmers comfort in operation and gives them the quality produced of abaca fibers that will lead to more market linkages.
The DA-Philippine Fiber Industry Development Authority (PhilFIDA) said the method of extraction influences fiber recovery and quality. Stripping is recommended within a day after tuxying. Manual stripping yields to 15-25 kilos per day while the spindle stripping recovers 80-120 kilos per day.
Aside from the planting materials and fertilizers, technical assistance was provided by DA-Caraga in coordination with the DA-PhilFIDA to empower the abaca farmers for a long-term goal.
The recipients also underwent training to establish and enhance abaca farms through the introduction of better farm management practices. #