Department of Agriculture (DA) Special Order 168, specifically mandated the Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Engineering (BAFE) to create a Technical Working Group (TWG) determine the level of mechanization or mechanization Index (MI) for rice, corn, and sugarcane.
The TWG shall be composed of the Postharvest Development and Mechanization (PHilMech) and the University of the Philippines – Los Banos (UPLB). The TWG aims to establish a standardized measure of the level of farm mechanization in the country.
The TWG, chaired by the BAFE director, included representatives from UPLB-College of Engineering (CLAT), PhiliMrch, Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice), the National Corn Program, The Sugar Regulatory Administration, the Philippine Council for Agriculture and Fisheries, and BAFE- Programs and Projects Management Division (PPMD). it shall collect and share information on existing computation methods for MI of rice, corn, and sugar. Likewise, the group shall gather pertinent data such as rice, corn and sugarcane production, total arable land used, and specifications of the machinery, among others. Each member agencies were given specific duties harmonized for the Philippine Agricultural Mechanization Index.
The creation of the TWG is a must for DA having been tasked to increase agri-food production as a result of the mechanization program of the PBBM administration. Indeed, Filipino farmers must accept change in their farming methods and accept the advancement of technology resulting from continuous research and development (R & D) efforts of the Filipino scientists and engineers. Other well off countries are progressive and economically sound because they have long embraced science and technology for decades.
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