/ 9 July 2021

SENATOR Grace Poe on Thursday expressed support to the Department of Agriculture’s Binhi ng Pag-asa program that aims to empower the youth to become competent agripreneurs.

The program aims to reach 1,855 beneficiaries across 115 cities and municipalities nationwide.

It will provide capacity-building workshops and equip participants with agricultural start-up kits.

“With the ageing population of farmers, we need to immerse the youth in agriculture and inspire them to become the next generation of farmers,” Poe said.

World Bank data showed that there has been a steady decline in the number of Filipinos employed in the agriculture sector from 37.11 percent in 2000 to 22.86 percent in 2019.

“Kung wala nang gustong magbungkal ng lupa sa kabataan, ano pa ang kakainin ng mga susunod na henerasyon?” the senator said.

The program was first rolled out in 2017 where lush organic farms have since become the BNP’s success story.

One of them is a Cebuano scholar who started with a pair of native chickens and hogs from the program and has now ventured into his own poultry business that he complemented with vegetable farming.

This year, the BNP will be implemented in the municipalities of Nueva Ecija, Albay, Camarines Sur, Aklan, and Davao de Oro. Provincial trainings will commence on July 27 and conclude with a summit on the first week of November.

Poe previously filed Senate Bill 127 or the proposed Tulong Kabataan sa Agrikultura Act of 2019 that seeks to provide scholarship assistance and allowances to students who will take courses in agriculture, fisheries, forestry and related areas to increase youth participation in the agricultural sector.