CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY–  Aiming to increase farmers and fisherfolk productivity and income, the Department of Agriculture – Regional Field Office 10 (DA-RFO 10) turned over one unit of Hauling Truck to Pastor Marlon Masong, Sr. of Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental realized thru the Agricultural Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (ACEF).

Masong has availed a loan grant of P1 million for the procurement of truck and other poultry equipment to improve his native chicken project in said town.

Representing on behalf of DA-RFO 10 Regional Executive Director Carlene C. Collado, Regional Technical Director for Research and Regulations, Carmelita T. Bajarla together with Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) representative Julius Vasallo, officially handed over the said agri-assistance to the ACEF beneficiary.

ACEF is DA’s lending program, which provides necessary credit to qualified farmers and fisherfolk for the acquisition and establishment of production, postharvest, and processing machineries, equipment and facilities, farm inputs and improvement.

ACEF thru LBP as its conduit bank can offer P1 million for individual farmers and fisherfolk while farmers and fisherfolk cooperatives, associations, and micro and small enterprises can avail a maximum of P5 million with an interest rate of two percent per annum payable in five years.

Masong expressed, with the minimal interest, individual smallholder farmers like him will be motivated to produce more and quality agricultural products that contributes to economic growth.

Said program was first implemented in 1996 and will end in December 2022.

Beneficiaries of said credit lending program are listed under the Registry System for Basic Sectors in Agriculture (RSBSA) and requires the submission of an agri-based project proposal, which will be thoroughly reviewed by Agribusiness and Marketing Assistance Division of DA.

Its funding source is from all tariffs and duties collected from the importation of agri-products (except for rice) to enhance the agri-sector through credit, research and development, and scholarships of students pursuing agriculture-related courses.# (EMBentulan)