Farms and Agriculture of the Philippines


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Throughout history, the Philippines has always been known as an agriculture country. Our traditions abound with reminders of our farming heritage, notably our classic songs ‘Bahay Kubo’ and ‘Magtanim ay di Biro,” said tourism undersecretary Frederick Alegre. The country’s main agricultural crops are rice, corn, coconut, sugarcane, bananas, pineapple, coffee, mangoes, tobacco, and abaca. Secondary crops include peanut, cassava, camote, garlic, onion, cabbage, eggplant, calamansi, rubber, and cotton. The Philippines exports its agricultural products around the world, including the United States, Japan, Europe, and ASEAN countries.

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From promoting beaches and other famous sites, the Department of Tourism together with other government agencies launched the It’s More Fun in Philippine Farms program. That’s why the researchers had chosen this to be their study and they believe that farm tourism will be a good foundation for the tourism industry of the Philippines. This study will open the mind of the readers to commemorate that Philippines is an agriculture country.

According to the DOT undersecretary Silvino Tejada “Agriculture represents the Filipino resiliency and productivity, the same theme showcased in all our ethnic and cultural festivals or fiestas throughout the country. Farm tourism in the Philippines literally means celebration and fun,”.

As tourism becomes increasingly important to the communities, the need to develop tourism sustainably also becomes a primary concern. Communities shape the natural landscapes which many tourists consume and the main reason for tourists to travel. Sustaining the community has therefore become an essential element of tourism.

In the Philippines, tourism is considered as one of the largest industries and the major contributor on the economy. One type of tourism the government promotes is agri-tourism.

Agri-tourism, also called as farm tourism is an activity done in rural areas, where all stages of agriculture and processing of farm products take place.

Ligas KBP Foundation, Inc. catches the attention of the researchers due to its uniqueness as compared to the other farms in the Philippines. Ligas KBP Foundation Inc. is the first model farm in Bulacan which showcases Vermi-Culture, Odorless Farm Animals and Housing, Medicinal or Herbal Garden, Perma-Culture and Aqua Culture, Container Gardening and Aqua-phonics.

Background of the Study

Central Luzon is strategically located between Northern Luzon and National Capital Region. It is landlocked by Pangasinan and Nueva Vizcaya on the north; Metro Manila, Cavite and Rizal on the south; Aurora and Dingalan Bay on the east and Palauig Bay and Subic Bay on the west. It is bestowed with a combination of towering mountains, extinct and active volcanoes, lush verdant farmlands and natural sea harbors. It was also remained as the top producer of palay, chicken, hog, tiger prawn and tilapia.

The Department of Agriculture has recognized Bulacan as one of the top 10 provinces with significant contribution to its rice sufficiency program for the third consecutive year. The region contains the largest plain in the country and produces most of the country’s rice supply, earning itself the nickname “Rice Granary of the Philippines”

Bulacan is 11 kilometers away from Manila which is the nation’s capital, it is dubbed as “The Gateway to the Northern Philippines”, which crosses the province into Pampanga and western part of Northern Luzon (western Central Luzon, Ilocos and Cordillera Administrative Region).

Ligas is on the most northern part of Malolos. It comprises almost 60 percent of the land area of rice lands the reason why the main livelihood of the inhabitants is farming. There are around 400 families, consisting of 1,700 people living peacefully in the barrio. Ligas KBP Foundation Inc was the first tourism accredited farm in Bulacan, it was owned by the group of farmers and people in the local community. Ligas KBP Foundation Inc is a social arm of Ligas Kooperatiba ng Bayan sa Pagpapaunlad, a duly registered under Securities and Exchange Commission and Department of Social Welfare and Development. The foundation has a persuasive advocacy in transforming lives and communities. Aligned to their advocacies is to develop and promote an integrated natural urban farming that will soon be introduced to farmers, students, entrepreneur and tourists through training and field trips.

Theoretical framework

According to Dillon M. Feuz and Melvin D. Skold, Economists, farm managers, financial advisors and policy makers frequently need to conduct farm level analyses. There is a continual need to evaluate changing technologies, government farm program effects, and changing market conditions at the farm level. The implications of changing financial conditions, policy options or technological alternatives must be understood at the farm level for educational programs to be designed or for necessary policy incentives to be offered to achieve the desired income support, supply response, or shifts in resource use.

When conducting farm level research, one is always faced with difficult decisions concerning the type of data on which to base the analysis. Frequently there are only a few options available: 1) collect individual data from a farm or a sample of farms to be analyzed; 2) use aggregate state or regionally reported data; or 3) use synthetic farms, often referred to as the economic-engineering approach. Each of these options has its advantages and disadvantages.

The advantage to collecting individual farm data is that the subsequent analyses should adequately describe the farm(s) being studied. One should be confident in the results and recommendations for that specific farm or group of farms. The major disadvantages to this method of doing farm level research are the time required and the high cost for gathering individual farm data. Unless the farms were selected from a carefully designed random sample, the potential to make general statistical inferences to a broader group of farms is limited. An advantage to using secondary published data at the state, or other aggregated level, is the data are relatively inexpensive to obtain. The major problem with most aggregate data is the question of what it actually represents, or is it representative of any particular farm or group of farms. Farming in many states is quite diverse, and average aggregate data may not be representative of any actual farming area or any particular farm. Furthermore, risk cannot be represented accurately with aggregate data because much of the variability faced by individual producers is “averaged out” of county, state or national aggregates.

Synthetic farms are often constructed from economic-engineering machinery budgets, agronomic crop response functions, and livestock production coefficients. They offer the advantages of relatively inexpensive data collection and data that should not be biased by peculiar management practices one may find with sample data. While these synthetic farms may represent what could or should be, they often overstate what actually is. For example, production may be overstated, leading to net income being overstated. This can be a problem in evaluating farm level impacts, and it needs to be recognized by those conducting the research.

The creation and maintenance of a set of typical farms, as a data base, can alleviate some of the data problems associated with the other sources of data mentioned. Data can be collected, or synthesized, for a set of typical farms and be quite representative of farms in an actual area. The costs of doing this are generally less than those associated with collecting data from a large number of individual farmers.

Analyses of sets of typical farms can provide some very useful information. The impacts from changing government policies can be evaluated and compared on different farm types. Likewise, technological changes can be evaluated and compared across farm types. This type of analysis could be very beneficial in predicting such variables as: land values, government program participation, technology adoption, and profitability on various types of farms.

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