LEGAZPI CITY – Seven agrarian reform beneficiaries' organizations (ARBOs) in Bicol have earned more than PHP5 million in the first four months of 2022 through vegetable sales and continued food deliveries to the National Nutrition Council (NNC).
In a statement on Thursday, Rodrigo Realubit, Department of Agrarian Reform-Bicol director, said that from January to April this year, the NNC was able to buy PHP5.2-million worth of goods from ARBOs in the region.
"We are very happy. The volume and sales that they are trying to get from our farmers speak of opportunities and, at the same time, challenges. Our farmers are certain that both partner agencies and the general public will purchase their produce," Realubit said.
He added that the relationship between ARBOs and institutional buyers gives farmers a chance to earn more since there is no more need for middlemen in selling their crops.
"This enhanced partnership against hunger and poverty (EPAHP) provides the correct direction for our ARB support services initiatives," he added.
Marilyn Valeza, NNC-regional nutrition program coordinator, said their agency is committed to sustaining their partnership with DAR-supported organizations.
She also noted the need to eradicate malnutrition and stunting throughout the country.
Valeza said she hopes the government will continue to help poor people, especially children, through the Tutok Kainan Dietary Supplementation Program (TKDSP).
"An agreement had already been made with the ARBOs in Masbate and Camarines Sur for the implementation of TKDSP Phase 4 for children aged 6 to 23 months while preparations are being made for Phase 5 of TKDSP in the provinces of Camarines Sur, Sorsogon, Catanduanes, and Masbate," she said.
The agricultural products purchased by institutional buyers include milled rice, vegetables, eggs, and fruits. (PNA)