rd estiocoFrom the Director’s Desk:  

CAR Branch is implementing the Green Our DOLE Program to promote the awareness of environment issues especially the safety and health of employees. To participate in this endeavor, I and the CAR staff personally visited an organic farm at Longlong, La Trinidad, Benguet, owned by Mr. Pat Acosta, a UP Los Baños Agriculture graduate.

Before our tour to the 3,000 sqm organic farm, we listened to a 3 -hour lecture by  Mr. Pat Acosta. He discussed the benefits of organically grown vegetables to consumers and to the farmers as well. He said that this kind of farming contributes to the health and well-being of soil, plants, animals, humans and the earth. Organic food often tastes better than commercially grown food. It has even longer shelf-life.

According to Mr. Acosta, organic farming is very easy and simple. It’s going back to the basics in soil cultivation. “It is more profitable and healthy because you don’t need to use chemical based fertilizers and pesticides. It utilizes natural and biological methods (grass composting using molasses or brown sugar and wood ash) to build up and replenish soil fertility,” he added.

During our tour, Mr. Acosta showed us the right way to transplant seedlings. The farm have different varieties of vegetables available all year round. Incidentally, Master’s Garden is one of the suppliers of organic vegetables of SM Baguio, Robinson’s Supermarket, Yellow Cab Baguio and other restaurants in Baguio that advocate organic food.

“As a famer for 33 years, I can say that organic farming is more profitable than the conventional method  as it involves less input costs in cultivation. The added value  of organic produce is better nutrition as organically produced plants are dramatically superior in mineral content,” Mr. Acosta concluded.

After the farm tour, I see organic farming as simple. It is very easy to do. I encourage everyone to start organic farming in their own backyard. It is our own little way to protect the environment. Lourdes P. Estioco