Piñol wants BSWM to conduct nationwide soil testing this year

In Photo: Photo taken from the BSWM website

THE new chief of the Department of  Agriculture (DA) said the Bureau of Soil and Water Management (BSWM) will be given a budget so it could again conduct soil testing this year.

Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel F. Piñol said he has ordered the BSWM to submit a proposal indicating the estimated budget required to conduct soil testing all over the country.

“I told the AMIA [Adaptation and Mitigation Initiative in Agriculture] of the DA and BSWM officials to submit to me an estimated budget requirement for the conduct of national soil testing,” Piñol said in a post on his Facebook account.

“This is in keeping with President Duterte’s order for the DA to come up with a color-coded agriculture guide map during his first 100 days in office,” he added.

The DA chief issued the order, after he found that soil data being used by the AMIA and the BSWM were gathered over 40 years ago, and that the agency’s request for additional budget for soil mapping has not been granted.

“[On Friday] in the first briefing I received from officials of the DA, I found out that the soil analysis data used by the department in waging a war against hunger were actually gathered over 40
years ago,” Piñol said.

“An official of the BSWM told me that they have been asking for additional budget for the soil mapping, but the request was not granted. I have no way of validating that claim,” he added.

Piñol said he has given the BSWM officials 45 days to complete
the proposal.

“What many have waited for 40 years to happen will have to be done within that short period of time because when the next planting season comes, I would like the farmers to be able to determine what crops to grow in their farms and what fertilizer to apply and use,” he said.

According to Piñol, national soil testing is “vital” in determining suitable crops that can be grown in a region, based on soil components and fertility.

It will also serve as a guide for the DA and the farmers in pinpointing the kind of nutrients or fertilizer that should be applied in specific areas to improve farmers’ productivity.

“Success in agriculture is all about correct data, right strategy and immediate action,” Piñol


1 comment

  1. Good point, Mr. Secretary. Farmers need government help to make farming productive – testing our soils is one way of helping them. Mahal magpa-soil testing and farmers can not afford to pay for this important step before planting what crops would give them better yield.

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