By: Embassy of the Republic of the Philippines, Seoul

Seoul, 19 June 2020 ? The Philippine Embassy launched the inaugural session of the Agri-Business Webinar focusing on Organic Farming and Value-Adding Agribusiness for Filipinos in Korea on June 13 and 14, 2020.

The KKK 2020 Agribusiness Webinar participants along with DA Undersecretary Rodolfo V. Vicerra, Charge d�?Affaires, a.i. Christian L. De Jesus, Agriculture Attache Aleli Maghirang, Labor Attache Maya Valderrama, Welfare Officer Pops Deuna, Pinoy Investors in Korea President Mimay Robregado, DA-ACPC Executive Director Jocelyn Badiola and Mr. Nick Jay Arr E. Engallado, the main resource speaker on Organic Farming and Value Adding Agribusiness Enterprise.
The webinar is part of the Kaalaman, Kabuhayan para sa Kinabukasan (KKK) 2020 Agri-business Reintegration Program spearheaded by the Philippine Agriculture Office (PAO) in partnership with the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) and Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) and the Pinoy Investors in Korea (PINK).

In his welcome message, Charge d'Affaires, a.i. Christian L. de Jesus of the Philippine Embassy in Seoul remarked that the pioneering webinar is one of the Philippine Embassy's commemorative activities for the 122nd Anniversary of the Declaration of Philippine Independence.

"The Agribusiness webinar is taking place at a time of economic uncertainty for the world amid the COVID-19 pandemic," CDA de Jesus said. "Now, more than ever, food security has emerged as a priority not only for the Philippines but also the rest of the world. For the Philippines, the agricultural sector has been a vibrant ray of hope and an important pillar of the economy, generating profits through agricultural exports overseas and providing livelihood opportunities for farming communities," he added.

The webinar was participated in by more than 60 Filipinos based in Korea and the Philippines for two consecutive days. The first Session focused on organic farming and accreditation while the second session expounded on value-adding for organic products and essential information on starting an agribusiness enterprise. Actual presentations on organic rice farm operations, processing and value-adding were also featured during the webinar.

Mr. Nick Jay Arr E. Engallado, co-owner of Engallado's Nature Farms and Natural Products was the primary resource speaker of the online course. Engallado's Nature Farms is a DA-ATI Accredited Learning Site for Organic Farming in Bukidnon, Northern Mindanao.

During the final session of the webinar, Undersecretary Rodolfo V. Vicerra of the Department of Agriculture's (DA) Office for Policy and Planning, exhorted the participants to answer the government's call to invest in the future of the Philippines and boost the agricultural productivity of rural communities back home by becoming agri-entrepreneurs or agri-investors. Quoting Agriculture Secretary William D. Dar, he underscored that "No pandemic can bury our dreams and aspirations, no lockdown can slow us down. Let us turn challenges into opportunities to survive and move forward towards a food-secure and resilient Philippines with prosperous farmers and fishers."

Undersecretary Vicerra also emphasized that under the New Normal, the DA is pushing for Agriculture Production Consolidation and Clustering as key strategies to advance the development of the Philippine agriculture sector and raise the incomes of Filipino farmers and fisherfolk. It is a new development framework that is science-based, inclusive, climate-smart, and resilient.

The Philippine Embassy through PAO Seoul and POLO-OWWA will continue to conduct free webinars under the KKK 2020 Agri-business Reintegration Program. END

19 June 2020