Issue of November 24, 2019
Mt. Province
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Strong market potentials of CAR heirloom rice vouched
by Carlito C. Dar / PIA

The Department of Agriculture is promoting the production of heirloom or traditional rice in the region, not only for its cultural/historical value but also because of its higher nutritional value and strong market potential.  

DA-Cordillera Director Cameron Odsey affirmed the competitiveness of Cordillera rice farmers, especially in the production of traditional or heirloom rice varieties that are mostly planted in the region’s rice terraces.

Odsey said there are around 500 traditional rice varieties that are indigenous in the region, mostly planted for personal or family consumption.

To document and to support the continuing production, Odsey said that in partnership with Philippine Rice Research Institute and the International Rice Research Institute, DA is implementing a program to identify and to have an inventory of Cordillera heirloom rice varieties. So far, 88 varieties of Cordillera heirloom rice have been identified.

In partnership with the Department of Science and Technology-Food and Nutrition Research Institute, a nutrition and grain quality analysis has been conducted. It showed that heirloom rice varieties have better nutritional value and quality compared to regular or commercial rice, Odsey said.

DA data shows that an estimated 14.26 hectares of rice terraces are engaged in heirloom rice production with an average yield of 2.32 tons/per hectare.

With more people getting into healthier diet or eating habits, the local market for heirloom rice is expanding and with the marketing assistance of the Department of Tourism, international market is also slowly coming in, he added.

He called for continuing convergence in maintaining the heirloom rice varieties in the region as well as in looking into improving the production, not only for the region’s rice sufficiency but also in improving the Cordillera’s competitiveness in the rice industry especially the heirloom rice varieties.

DA is spearheading the National Rice Awareness Month, an annual observance that aims to promote the consumption of local rice to help rice farmers’ increase their production and income.

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Philippine National Police – Police Regional Office – CAR
R.A Gapuz Review Center

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Albergo Hotel and Residences
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