Developing farming technologies and and establishing a unified Research abd Development Extension or RDE is one of the advocacies of the Department of Agriculture-Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization (DA-PHilMech) . Also called Agrinnovation, RDE agenda should result to getting more inputs from the intended users of farm technologies, particularly small farmers and agriculture cooperatives, and in manufacturers of farm equipment complying with the design and quality standards set by PHilMech for all the technologies it is commercializing.
PHilMech Executive Director and Scientist Dr. Dionisio G. Alvindia said that under Article VI, Section 25 of Rr epublic Act No. 10601 or the “Act Promoting Agriculture and Fisheries Mechanization and Development in the Country,” PHilMech takes the lead in the DA’s agricultural and fishery mechanization RDE programs and projects.
“The overall aim of Stakeholder-driven RDE is to develop and commercialize farming technologies that are best suited for small farmers and agriculture cooperatives by getting from them more inputs that will be used by the agency to lead a unified RDE agenda for farm and fisheries mechanization, and postharvest and food processing development,” Dr. Alvindia emphasized.
Also, PhilMech will require accredited manufacturers of farm equipment to strictly follow the agency’s design and quality standards.
“RA 10601 also promotes the local manufacture of farm equipment and PHilMech has helped develop the local metal industry that are mostly made up of small and medium scale enterprises in the past seven years since the rationalization of the agency in 2010. However, there is a need to improve the quality of their products to make sure end-users get ‘value-for-money’ from the farm equipment they invest in or given to them by the government,” Dr. Alvindia said.
Article IV Section 15 of RA 10601 states that “Production of locally-made engines and other machinery for agricultural and fisheries purposes shall be promoted and encouraged by the DA in partnership with the private sector, and through joint venture agreements.”
BUILDING ON AGRINNOVATION
he also said Stakeholder-driven RDE builds on the gains of Agrinnovation, which was the advocacy and framework of PHilMech during the past administration.
Under Agrinnovation, PHiMech tapped existing farm technologies and innovated them to fit local conditions. This resulted to the development of farm machine prototypes from six months to 18 months from the usual two years to six years.
He said Stakeholder-driven RDE should result in more innovation by PHilMech’s highly-capable scientists and engineers of existing farming technologies, and the utilization of “reverse engineering.”
“Of course, the innovation should be driven by inputs from the intended users of the farming technologies, which are small farmers and agriculture cooperatives,” Dr. Alvindia added. (Click pictrure below to enlarge)