LEGAZPI CITY — The Department of Agriculture (DA) has committed its support to the completion of new infrastructure projects worth P315 million for agriculture in Albay, under the Intensified Building Up of Infrastructure and Logistics for Development (I-BUILD) program.
Albay Second District Rep. Joey Sarte Salceda, chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, commended the DA for its funding support for the projects which are located in Legazpi City, and the towns of Manito, Camalig, and Daraga, all in his dtrict. They were proposed by their respective local government units. He endorsed and helped secure the budgets for them.
The projects include a P35.6-million Level 2 Water System for farms in Manito, a P75-million trading post in Camalig, a P55-million AA slaughterhouse in Daraga and the P150-million upgrade of a Legazpi City slaughterhouse to AAA category, the highest rated slaughterhouse in the region in terms of capabilities and biosafety features.
“The projects represent different segments of the agriculture value chain. The slaughterhouses are also crucial investments, since we need biosafety improvements in the light of the African Swine Fever,” Salceda said. He
also commended the DA for its focus on agricultural modernization, “so that farmers will produce more and get more money out of it. It’s the way forward with this sector,” he noted.
“We are thankful that DA has made Albay a case study area for effective agricultural policies and programs. The ‘Edible Landscaping sa Barangay Project (ELBP)’ in my district is considered as one of the most successful community food production schemes anywhere in the country,” he added.
Salceda said Albay is also a DA priority area for palay production under the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF). He likewise shared that Agriculture Secretary William Dar has also committed to support the hog repopulation and protein substitution schemes in the province.
“This will help stabilize food prices in Albay, especially since Bicol food prices are at a higher level, as shown in the Philippine Statistics Authority’s inflation reports for the past two months,” he pointed out.
“During this period of depressed incomes, the last thing you want is higher food prices and lower food supply. So, we thank DA for lending us a helping hand in feeding our people in the second district of Albay,” the lawmaker stressed.