A highly successful remarkable Sustainable Land Resources Management Approach (SLMRA) Farmer’s Field Day was held on December 7, 2023, in Tapaz, Capiz. Remarkable being the culminating event to cap the 5-year Project implementation in the Province. The field day was conducted by the Department of Agriculture-Bureau of Soils and Watershed Management (DA-BSWM) through its Soil Conservation and Management Division (SCMD) together with the Local Government Unit of Tapaz through its Municipal Agriculture Office (MAO) and DA – Regional Field Office VI (DA-RFO VI).

Field visit at the SLRMA Model Farms in Brgy. Agcococ, Tapaz, Capiz showcased the environmental and economic benefits of the adapted SLRMA technologies. The site visit was facilitated by Mr. Jeric M. Umipig, SCMD- BSWM Technical Staff. Mr. Jovel Gevero, SLRMA Farmer Leader, provided a brief history of the SLRMA Model Farms in their Barangay, and expressed his appreciation and satisfaction for his life changing experiences brought by the Project. 

Over 200 upland farmers from Tapaz and guest stakeholders were warmly welcomed by Ms. Neriza Pasinio, Chief, Tapaz MENRO during the program proper at the Tapaz Civic Center. 

Through a video, Hon. Roberto O. Palomar, Mayor of Tapaz, Capiz expressed his gratitude to the BSWM for choosing Tapaz as one of the SLRMA sites and for the dedication in helping the upland farmers in addressing their farm problems. He promised that the LGU-Tapaz will continue the adoption of SLRMA in the other Barangays. 

On behalf of BSWM Director Gina P. Nilo, Ph.D., Engr. Eduardo V. Alberto, SCMD Chief delivered a Keynote Address that highlighted the beneficial effects of the SLRMA Project on improved soil health, improved agricultural productivity, plus better livelihood opportunities. He also encouraged the LGU Tapaz for the mainstreaming of SLRMA principles in their local programs to sustain the benefits that have been achieved through the Project. 

On the other hand, SLRMA Tapaz Team Leader, Engr. Bony P. Dela Cruz discussed the SLRMA’s brief history and goals of the Project. He also expressed his gratitude to all who attended the event and encouraged all farmers to continue practicing soil conservation technologies even after the culmination of interventions this 2023. 

Ms. Bernadette Gadong and Ms. Rosalie Aducal, SLRMA Farmer Cooperators from Brgy. Cristina and Brgy. Agcococ, respectively shared their testimonies on how the SLRMA Project improved their lives and extended their utmost gratitude to the efforts and unending support of the BSWM and the LGU-Tapaz in sharing their knowledge and expertise. 

Ms. Luisa Fulgeras, Chief of the DA-RFO VI Research Division encouraged the adaptation of technologies showcased at the pilot site such as multiple cropping as this evidently improved the livelihood of the farmers. 

Engr. Evangeline F. Dacumos and Mr. Ace Wilfred Abarro II, from the BSWM-SCMD also shared their insights on the ways forward. 

Finally, Ms. Ma. Theresa G. Nepumuceno, Oversight of Tapaz-MAO lauded the excellent convergence efforts of the BSWM, LGU-Tapaz and DA-RFO VI in helping Tapaz farmers to improve their production and livelihood through the application of technologies showcased in the SLRMA Project. She likewise encouraged the farmers present in the Field Day to continue the adoption of SLM technologies and other learnings they acquired.

The SLMRA is a five-year Research & Development (R&D) Project implemented by the BSWM under the National Corn Program (NCP) in partnership with the DA-RFOs and selected LGUs providing support to upland corn farmers while showcasing the importance of Sustainable Land Management (SLM) practices and approaches/ Soil and Water Conservation (SWC) Technologies/ Biodiversity- Friendly Agricultural Practices (BDFAP) to sustain agricultural productivity and profitability in sloping areas while protecting the soil resources. 

Photos taken by: Engr. Dianne Michelle Roque and Mr. Dave Bryan C. Rimando)