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Mayon-affected farmers receive implements, training from DA

By Connie Calipay

LEGAZPI CITY --- The Department of Agriculture in Bicol (DA-5) has released PHP2.4 million worth of interventions to the Albay Provincial Agriculture Office (APAO) and Albay Veterinary Office (AVO) for the provision of continuous assistance to farmers affected by the ongoing unrest of Mayon Volcano.

On Tuesday, Lovella Guarin, DA-5 information officer, said the assistance was from the regular fund of the agency.

The assistance included 400 bags of hog grower feeds (15 kg per bag); 50 bags of ruminant concentrate (50 kg per bag); and drugs, biologics and mineral blocks for animals and nylon ropes from the Livestock Program.

The High-Value Crops Development Program (HVCDP) delivered 90 pieces laminated sacks, 10 units of knapsack sprayers, and 30 pieces of plastic drums; and agricultural inputs for the establishment of communal gardens at evacuation sites.

"As of June 30, DA Bicol has already given interventions, particularly for the needs of the livestock animals evacuated," Guarin said in an interview.

DA-5 will also conduct abaca twine and eco-bag making training for women evacuees in the towns of Malilipot and Guinobatan on July 12 and 13.

“The finished products will be bought by a company and the profit will be given to the evacuees as an additional source of income," Guarin said.

Evacuees will likewise be trained in vegetable production.

Meanwhile, Guarin said they conduct regular health monitoring and disease surveillance of evacuated livestock.

"Veterinarians also collected blood and fecal samples from the evacuated animals to determine the occurrence of diseases for prevention and control. The disease surveillance and evacuation protocols were documented by the Bureau of Animal Industry and French representatives of the World Organisation for Animal Health," she noted.

A total of 1,120 animals were evacuated by the AVO to 21 pooling sites in six local government units within the six to seven-kilometer permanent danger zones – carabaos (467), cattle (628), and goats (25). (PNA)


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