A couple of years after the devastation of Yolanda, a lush corn farm can be found in the uplands of Barangay Guirang, Basey, Samar. The 5-hectare corn farm was realized by 40 active members of Guirang Farmers Association at the peak of the barangay around 1.5 kilometres from the provincial road. In an interview with the association secretary, Mr. Claro Labuac, who also served as the guide during the visit of the monitoring team, they are still planning to expand the corn plantation by utilizing the vacant spaces of the area. Some spaces were planted with cacao, intercropped with banana, pineapple and gabi. They also have a small fishpond at the entrance where their farm is located, which grows tilapia and catfish.

They constructed a nursery that also serves as their training center for their members and a shed for receiving technicians and visitors. They are now in the process of constructing four additional buildings for their hog and native chicken production, vermi composting and mat weaving showroom center. They have some farm implements utilized in their farming activities, and heavy equipment lent to them by the Department of Agriculture (DA).

Mr. Labuac said they requested the DA to station in their farm one big tractor as they are tilling a huge field. Aside from the agriculture technician of the municipality, they are also planning to tap the experts, especially on livestock production and vermi composting. The expertise of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) would also be sought for a training on value chain analysis and other value adding techniques that should be applied to their produce.

Marlon T. Andrino, YPMO, NEDA VIII