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Pampanga farmers get farm equipment from agriculture department, governor

LUBAO, Pampanga—Farmers from Lubao and San Luis towns in Pampanga province received subsidized farm equipment from the Department of Agriculture (DA) and Gov. Lilia G. Pineda as part of the provincial government’s agriculture-enhancement program.

The San Luis Association Cooperative and Lambak Multipurpose Cooperative each got five combined harvesters, rice cutters and a four-wheel rice reaper. Farmer Jose Bernarte, from San Rafael village in Lubao, received a rice thresher.

The equipment given to the cooperatives would be used on a per-schedule basis so that each member would be given the chance to use them, according to farmer Lemencio Banal, also from Lubao.

“With the equipment provided by Governor Pineda and the DA, we will be able to double our harvest [yield],” Banal said.

During the distribution of the machines in Lubao, Pineda said most rice growers in the province cannot increase their yield because they lack farm equipment that could reduce time and manual labor. She added that this fact prompted the provincial government to support the farmers in buying such equipment.

The DA funded 85 percent of the cost of the equipment; the remaining 15 percent—supposed to be shouldered by the farmers—was provided by the provincial government.

“Farm equipment like combined harvesters are expensive for farmers who own a hectare of land,” Pineda said. She added that because of the machines’ costliness, farmers find it hard to produce the 15 percent needed to purchase them.

This fact led the governor to include farm-machinery distribution in the provincial government’s agriculture-enhancement program.

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