Impasug-ong, Bukidnon- Some 125 rice farmers in barangays Kalabugao and Hagpa become twice as productive through the Department of Agriculture-Special Area for Agricultural Development (DA-SAAD) intervention in Northern Mindanao.

The Hagpa and Kalabugao SAAD Farmers Associations received a total of 2,350 Itik Pinas (Native Philippine Ducks) as part of SAAD’s Php1.3 million livelihood project in said town on October 15, 2019.

Each farmer received a module of either 22 or 18 head ducks, promising extra farm income for the farmer-beneficiaries.

[Amu gikalingawan og atiman ang among mga bebe. Karon nagsugod na sila og pangitlog, ug paunhanay kami kada buntag pangolekta sa mga itlog. Maka income gyud mi ani nga project.]

“We took care of the ducks as pastime routine. We started to appreciate it when the ducks started to lay eggs. Now every morning we race to the barn to collect our ducks’ eggs. Indeed, we can earn from this project,” said Eugene Ragmac, 52-year old SAAD beneficiary farmer of barangay Hagpa.

In a span of three months, Ragmac and his family collected at least 2,458 pieces duck eggs which were sold at P7 each.

“Duck eggs production has huge potential, considering the untapped demand in the local and neighboring towns’ market. Significantly, the project is manageable by our farmers and highly suitable to our SAAD-adopted areas in Impasug-ong since it is predominantly rice areas with ready water source,” Impasug-ong Senior Agriculturist, Engr. Ruel Gomez averred.

Aside from daily dose of protein for their family, other project-recipients in the area also started to earn from their duck barn harvesting daily eggs produce.

To maximize the project’s potential, DA-SAAD farmer-beneficiaries are considering to acquire incubator, allowing them to engage in balut and days-old-ducklings production.

Noting challenges encountered by the farmers, the LGU is planning to train the farmers on alternative feeds formulation, which is seen to help them becoming cost-effective in managing the project.

DA-SAAD-10 for its part will augment its support to the farmers by subsidizing ducks feeds which is expected to be available by June this year.# (ATalib)