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Philippines: Smart greenhouse project for cooperatives launched in Batangas

The city government of Batangas launched the Smart Greenhouse Project for agri-based cooperatives in the city as a push for urban farming and as a means to support the food security initiative of the national government.

In a memorandum of agreement signed on April 24 between the city government, represented by Mayor Beverley Rose Dimacuha, and the cooperatives represented by their respective chairperson, including Shelwyn Giganto of Bucal Multi-Purpose Cooperative (MPC), Rodolfo Geron of San Isidro Multi-Purpose Cooperative (SIMCO), and Edelyn Briones of Talumpok Silangan Multi-Purpose Cooperative (TASIMCO), the city laid down the support it will provide for each cooperative and the obligation of each beneficiaries.

Beneficiaries will manage and maintain the greenhouse project for 15 years, funded entirely by the city government and provided with technical assistance from the City Agriculture Office to monitor its operations.

According to City Agriculturist Flor Alvarez, the greenhouse project will utilize hydroponics or the planting of crops without using soil. Instead, they are planted in water enriched with nutrients.

"The process is simple with hydroponics because it's easy to grow vegetables, it's pest-free, and it's also a good source of livelihood," Alvarez said.

Mayor Dimacuha stated that the cooperatives that were made project beneficiaries should take good care of the facilities and pass on their farming knowledge through it.

"My request is for everyone to nurture and protect this project, and also to encourage our youth to engage in farming while they are young because there are many innovations now that they can use," Dimacuha said.

The leaders and members of the cooperatives expressed their gratitude for the vow to further develop and enhance the greenhouse project by using the free vegetable seeds given to growers in the city.

The smart greenhouse project is part of Batangas City's compliance with Republic Act 8435 or the 'Agriculture and Fisheries Modernization Act of 1997', a law that promotes food security and self-sufficiency through modernization.


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