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The Comprehensive Assistance to Small Holders (C.A.S.H.) for Farm Productivity by the SIFI-Responsible Sourcing from Smallholders (RSS) Program in Negros Occidental shares their demo farms and farmers’ recent achievements for the year 2023.

According to SIFI-RSS Junior Agriculturist Romel Cortones, the 3 C.A.S.H. ARBOs (NARC, GARC, and SJTARC) have green manuring demo farms with an area that ranges from 1 to 1.65 hectares. These demo farms have a plant age of 8 to 9 months old, and are expected to be harvested on the first quarter of 2024. All demo farms are showing high tillering and are projecting good tonnage

IN PHOTO: 8-month old green manuring demo field of SJTARC. Farm Manager (R) and RSS Agriculturist (L) during one of the field visits.

GARC Farm worker conducts de-trashing of cane to measure the diameter length of the 8 months old green manure field. RSS Agriculturist advised ARBO to measure the length and diameter of their cane to project tonnage.

The continuing education of CASH ARBOs is an important component of this sub-program. In 2023, the RSS organized and led a series of trainings for the ARBOs, one of which is the Seed Variety Programming (held in 2 batches) which strengthened the knowledge of farmers in correctly identifying the sugarcane variety through its physical appearance, planting timing, and other characteristics that affect yield. This was a much appreciated training by the ARBOs as it clarified many of their misconceptions and incorrect planting and management practice on some sugar cane varieties. The farmers also showed interest when the new HYV cane varieties by the Philippine Sugar Research Institute (PHILSURIN) were presented.

For the whole of 2023, RSS ran a total of 5 trainings that benefitted 140 farmers.

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