DILIMAN, Quezon City—The use of organic concoctions and vermicompost is helping an 8-hectare rice farm in Legazpi, Albay become more sustainable amid the rising cost of fertilizer and other farm inputs.
In a radio interview, Good Grass Farm manager and trainer Lindy Grace Ala said that making their own liquid fertilizer using raw materials from the farm is beneficial to them as it reduces production expenses.
“[Organic farming] is better for the welfare not only of the consumers but also of the workers. That’s why we shifted to organic. We want to be sustainable,” Ala said.
Good Grass Farm is a Learning Site for Agriculture of the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) and a Farm School of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority. They sell brown, red, and black rice from Php60 to Php80 per kilo.
Aside from pigmented rice, they also have a market for rice seeds which is also a profitable venture for them.
“Truthfully, it is difficult to transition from synthetic production because this is more on mass production. In the process of the transition, our yield really decreased. But once we made the full transition, we could reach almost the same level of production,” she shared.
Ala added that having the soil tested before planting is important to any type of farming. This is to determine the nutrients needed by the farm.
The 23-year-old farmer and trainer, who was recognized as an Outstanding Young Professional in 2022, also shared how she started in agriculture. Likewise, in line with the National Women’s Month Celebration, she encouraged other women to not let their gender become a hindrance in pursuing agriculture.
Ala’s interview was aired on the ATI’s “Agri Asenso” program on DZRH last March 25, 2023. Visit https://fb.watch/jCcjW9UKo-/ for the full episode.