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Filipinos undergo organic farming training in Taiwan

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After the launching of the Taiwan “Smart Farming” demonstration farm in Tarlac City on December 15, the Manila Economic and Cultural Office on Saturday rolled out the first-ever training program in organic farming for overseas Filipino workers, immigrants, and students in Taiwan.

MECO chairman Silvestre H. Bello III said the free training is in line with the thrust of the Marcos administration to boost local agricultural production in the country.

“We have introduced a program to equip our OFWs, as well as our Filipino immigrants and students in Taiwan, with skills in modern organic farming so that they may use them when they return to the Philippines,” Bello said.

“In this manner, perhaps slowly, we hope to contribute to increasing our domestic food production and improve the lives of our OFWs, immigrants and students once they are back in the country,” he added.

Stressing the inclusion of OFWs in the program, Bello said, “The learnings they will obtain will provide them the opportunity for an alternative livelihood that has the potential for agri-business, especially for those who are going home for good.”

The first batch of trainees which included 15 OFWs and nine Filipino immigrants and students, underwent a two-day experiential training in a farm in Kaohsiung City.

The training provided immersive and hands-on experience in agri-technologies, agri-education and agri-entrepreneurship.

The training program is a joint undertaking of the MECO Kaohsiung Extension Office and the Migrant Workers Office in partnership with Kaohsiung-based AgriGaia Social Enterprise International Ltd.

Director Ma. Karina P. Trayvilla of MECO Kaohsiung said the training was the fruition of an agreement signed by chairman Bello and AgriGaia in September last year to help boost local food production.

“The agreement provides that the skills and knowledge acquired by the trainees on modern agriculture and technology will be shared with their local communities on their return,” Trayvilla said.

According to MWO Director David Des T. Dicang, the OFWs who participated are mostly from the manufacturing sector.

“Our participating OFWs have shown keen interest in learning modern organic farming. This is a positive indication of the program’s success,” he said

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