070920 LGUalliance
MinDA conducts geo-tagging and aerial mapping in Bukidnon to identify potential areas for vegetable and high-value crop production to help communities recover from the economic effects of the global pandemic. Photo by MinDA.

DAVAO CITY – MinDA Secretary Emmanuel Piñol is pushing for alliance and cooperation among LGUs to complement in the implementation of small infrastructure undertakings in the face of financial difficulties and amid the ongoing pandemic.

“Like the PALMA alliance, each town contribute a number of machinery to an equipment pool, to complete infrastructure undertaking of the member LGUs”, said Piñol underscoring the self-reliance approach of municipalities.

PALMA alliance is the grouping of municipalities in North Cotabato composed of Pigcawayan, Pikit, Aleosan, Libungan and Midsayap.

Like the PALMA alliance, the IMTASULA alliance initiative for Bukidnon towns is now set for formation.

“IMTASULA is a provincial development strategy composed of the municipalities of Impasugong, Talakag, Sumilao, and Lantapan in Bukidnon Province aimed at developing a model of dynamic and holistic environment and sustainable agriculture,” said Secretary Piñol.

Piñol said IMTASULA, being the home to four vegetable production towns in Bukidnon, would include not only improved production but environmental protection as well.

MinDA Director Joey Remicilla, who leads the project including the Balik Probinsya, Bagong Pag-asa Program (BP2) rural settlement sites in different areas in Mindanao, presented the development framework of IMTASULA.

“Based on the perspective of Secretary Piñol, the IMTASULA initiative will be composed of various programs including environmental and ecological protection, water conservation, farm-to-market roads, trading and marketing, and tourism promotion,” he said.

An on-going geo-mapping of the four (4) municipalities is being conducted by MinDA technical team with the support of DA – Region 10 until 10 July 2020, which aims to determine the synchronization of farming activity, controlled planting, and schedule of harvest.

The complex will also have Farmers Trading Center that will facilitate e-commerce trading and provide national or regional price monitoring of High Value Crops (HVC), including refrigerated container vans as an alternative for cold storage facility for agricultural products.

On June 22, MinDA and Eng Seng Foods, Inc. of Davao City held a dialogue on possibility of buying high valued crops as well as potential investment in vegetable production at premium prices for farmers.

Both will jointly conduct marketing research and study on the agricultural commodities as part of the partnership between Eng Seng and the local farmers to determine market supply and demand in Mindanao and possible export market opportunities.

An agri-tourism planning activity will be organized for farmers and residents on July 20 to 24, 2020.

This will introduce the participants to tribal culture products and ecotourism packages that will complement the Trading Center.

Priority farm-to-market roads in the areas will be determined by the barangays, while assistance for titling or land tenurial instrument for the farmers will be requested from the DENR – 10. TESDA and DA will also be requested to lobby for the establishment of a training center in Lantapan.

Some Talakag farmers also participated during a MinDA-initiated group field tour to a Ram Pump Technology facility in Murcia, Negros Occidental last July 1 – 3. The said technology, together with water impounding system and solar power irrigation, is being eyed to be replicated in the IMTASULA development project for the benefit of farmers and vegetable growers.
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