RICE AWARENESS. The winners of the #BUYani rice information campaign photo contest of the Department of Agriculture in Davao Region (DA-11), through its Regional Agri- Fisheries and Information Section (RAFIS), are recognized on Friday (Nov. 18, 2022). The contest promotes rice awareness and honored the contribution of Filipino farmers. (PNA photo by Che Palicte)

DAVAO CITY – The Department of Agriculture in Davao Region (DA-11) through its Regional Agri-Fisheries and Information Section (RAFIS) recognized Friday the winners of the #BUYani photo contest that showcased rice awareness and respect for the hardships and contribution of the farmers.

Coinciding with the annual celebration of National Rice Awareness Month (NRAM), RAFIS chief Elizabeth Torio said the contest aims to put a spotlight on the staple food amid issues of malnutrition and poverty, as well as the quest for rice sufficiency.

“Locally-produced rice by our farmers must be patronized to support their livelihood and we have to thank them for producing quality rice for Filipino consumers,” Torio said in an interview.

Jaycelle Muaña, the regional grand winner of the contest from Samal City, Davao del Norte province, said her photo depicts the significance of inculcating on the young the farmers’ hardship in producing food on every Filipino table.

The entry of Jaycelle Muaña who bagged the grand prize award of the #BUYani rice information campaign photo contest of the Department of Agriculture in Davao Region.  (Photo courtesy of Jaycelle Muaña)

“As early as a child, educating them on the value of rice and farmers' hard work is a must. In doing so, there's no room for ignorance about how valuable rice is, as they will understand and appreciate the hands who did the hard work for us to enjoy our every meal,” she said.

Muaña said she was motivated to join the contest because she wanted to emphasize the value of the staple food.

“If we will be able to educate the people on how valuable the rice is, they will also get to understand how valuable the work of our farmers is,” she said.

The Philippine Rice Research Institute also joined the call to avoid rice wastage to help achieve food security. (PNA)