“Buhay sa Gulay” launched
Residents, youths, local vegetable growers, barangay officials, and agrarian reform beneficiaries’ organizations (ARBOs) joined the launching by the Department of Agrarian Reform (Dar) on Mar. 29 of “Buhay sa Gulay” in Barangay Dalipay, Milaor, Camarines Sur.
“Buhay sa Gulay,” an urban vegetable gardening project initiated by DAR will be managed by the barangay residents themselves to encourage them to plant and eat healthy vegetables.
Camarines Sur I Agrarian Reform chief Gay Labad said an idle lot measuring approximately 2,000 square meters near the barangay hall was converted into an integrated urban agriculture site that will serve as a food basket and main source of commodities to sustain the vegetable or food supply of the community as an adaptation measure towards resiliency.
She expressed her appreciation to the Dalipay Barangay Council led by Punong Barangay Romeo Sarte Rodriguez, for taking on the project’s challenge amid the pandemic, and her admiration for how, despite the current circumstances, the residents of Barangay Dalipay--young and old, male and female, are all ready to lend a helping hand.
The project site, a private agricultural land, is strategically located 800 meters from the Maharlika Highway, a five-minute ride from Naga City.
The lot has been divided and assigned to the different barangay zones. Residents of each zone plant and care for their chosen crops on their own.
During the launch, DAR Bicol Regional Director Rodrigo O. Realubit said the primary goal of the Buhay sa Gulay is to promote urban farming and to inspire people in cities and urban areas to pursue vegetable farming in order to have an alternative source of income from the harvested produce.
According to Realubit, DAR Sec. John Castriciones continues to campaign for the greening of the urban areas as part of DAR’s efforts to ensure a safe and sufficient food supply in urban areas.
Realubit emphasized the importance of encouraging people living in urban areas to take part in food production not only in Camarines Sur area, particularly in Milaor, but throughout the country.
“On behalf of the department, I express also my sincere gratitude to the members of vegetable growers, the residents and Barangay Council of Dalipay for their cooperation and support in the project’s implementation,” he said.
The Department of Agriculture (DA) provided assorted vegetable seed packets and seedlings to support the project, while DAR’s Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Development Sustainability Division assisted in land preparation, the layout of the agri site, and planting, as well as the provision of farm tools.
Rodriguez, Dalipay village chief said the project has allowed not only him but also a number of barangay residents, to realize a lifelong dream of having a farming project like this in the heart of their community.
He stated that their community’s collaboration with DAR will undoubtedly ensure the project’s success. He also hoped that soon, neighboring communities and barangays will take also on the challenge of starting and maintaining an urban vegetable farm.
DAR assistant regional director for operations Romulo A. Britanico, regional support services chief Lerma S. Dino, provincial support services chief Augusto SA. Medina, Jr., provincial chief administrative officer Rene B. Bacho, legal chief Atty. Jaime G. Resoco, Jr., and provincial agrarian reform program officer I Ricardo C. Garcia were present during the activity.
Also present during the event were personnel of the DAR municipal office of Milaor-Pamplona II-Gainza cluster led by municipal agrarian reform program officer Virgilio L. Beriña, as well as personnel of the provincial support services office.