Department of Agrarian Reform officials led by Secretary John Castriciones with La Trinidad officials led by Mayor Romeo Salda sprearhead the ribbon cutting and turn over ceremony of the solar power irrigation system in Barangay Alno, La Trinidad, Benguet on Thursday, April 8, 2021. The P800, 000.00 irrigation system was turned over to the Alno Rural Community Development Cooperative which is expected to provide water to more than 15 hectares of cut flower and vegetable farms in Alno. RMC PIA-CAR

POPCOM Regional Director Magdalena Abellera(3rd from left) and partner panelists in the forum push for a whole of society approach in addressing women's concerns including repruductive health in this time of health pandemic. (CCD/PIA CAR)

NCCA Chairperson Arsenio Lizaso (with mic) during the PIA Cordillera- led Kapihan media forumabout the first Montañosa Film Festival. Joining him (from left to right) are Film Academy of the Philippines chairperson Vivian Velez, Baguio City Vice Mayor Faustino Olowan, NCIP Chairperson Secretary Allen Capuyan (4th from left), NCIP Commissioner for Central Visayas Jennifer Pia Sibug-las and NCIP Commisioner for Region 1 and CAR Gaspar Cayat. (CCD/PIA CAR)

Benguet Governor Melchor Diclas presides over the Provincial Inter-Agency Task Force Meeting on COVID-19 on March 29, 2021 at the Benguet Provincial Capitol attended by task force member agencies. (photo by RMC-PIA-CAR)

Cut flower, vegetable farmers to benefit from solar powered irrigation system in Alno

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet, April 12 (PIA) -- The Department of Agrarian Reform formally turned over and inaugurated the new solar powered irrigation system to cut flower and vegetable farmers in Barangay Alno in this capital town.

DAR Secretary John Castriciones  and La Trinidad Mayor Romeo Salda and Vice Mayor Roderick Awingan led the ribbon cutting and turn over ceremony of the solar power irrigation system to the Alno Rural Community Development Cooperative (ARCDC), the agrarian reform beneficiary organization on Thursday, April 8.
The irrigation project amounting to P800, 000.00 is expected to irrigate a total of 15 hectares of farmlands benefiting 233 members of the cooperative.
The farm area in Alno is mostly planted with cut flowers such as roses, anthuriums, and mums which are sold in Baguio City and in Metro Manila markets but there are also plantations of highland and low land vegetables such as beans and tomatoes.
“Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, we are here to formally turn over the solar powered irrigation system, and I am very glad that there are a lot of beneficiaries who would benefit from the project. I hope that we will be able to continue our thrust, our commitment to really enrich agriculture,”   Castriciones said in his message during the program at the Kadoorie Elementary School.
The Secretary said that the DAR was supposed to provide five solar powered irrigation project to the municipality but due to the problem on the water sources, only one pushed through.  But he assured that they will still be providing the other projects soon.
“With the technology we have right now, we will be able to find a way on how to improve irrigation in your place, and I commit that the moment that we will be able to tap a good source of water we will add additional programs like the solar powered irrigation system that will enhance the economic lives of our farmers,” the Secretary added.

ARCDC Chairperson Ernesto Dongbo expressed gratitude to the DAR for the support it is extending to help coop members and other farmers in the community   to improve their lives.  

Dongbo said that farmers in the area are using electrical pump to bring water from the nearby river to their farmlands and this is an added cost to them. With the new irrigation system, farmers can   save the cost of electricity which they could use to buy other basic needs for their families instead.
The irrigation system is among the many support provided by the DAR to the cooperative that really benefited the members as well as the community. Among the projects provided by DAR include the construction of the cooperative building of the ARCDC, trainings on cooperative management and operations, provision of farm equipment such as shredders and power sprayers and a water refilling station.  

Department of Agrarian Reform Secretary John Castriciones with La Trinidad Mayor Romeo Salda officially turned over to the Alno Rural Community Development Cooperative led by its Chairperson Ernesto Dongbo witnessed by PARPO Virginia Aycud and PARCOMM Benguet Chairperson Marson Lay-at. RMC PIA-CAR  

Mayor Salda also expressed gratitude to the DAR for the continuing support to the farmers of Alno and the municipality. He said the Alno  project is unique since  it will provide water for mostly cut flowers, which is a popular product of La Trinidad, instead of the usual  irrigation systems  for rice or vegetable farms.  

The newly turned over irrigation system is very timely and would be usable particularly during the summer season, he added.  
The mayor also announced that the local government will provide funding for the flood control within the water source of the irrigation system as counterpart of the municipal government.  

 “Let us continue working together for the development of the farmers and the constituents of Alno and La Trinidad particularly if there are more projects that would benefit the other barangays of the municipality,” Salda said in his message. (JDP/RMC-PIA CAR)

By Redjie Melvic M. Cawis




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