By James Earl E. Ogatis
Forwarded by Edna Garde, Manager, FITS OPA Negros Occidental
Iloilo City–The Regional Crop Protection Center (RCPC) 6 urged farmers to be vigilant and intensify their pest and diseases monitoring activities in their respective rice cluster areas.
With the onset of the wet cropping season RCPC 6 formed the Bantay Peste Volunteer Brigade (BPVB) to prevent rice pest outbreaks. BPVB is a community-based pest monitoring and management team wherein farmers themselves are the pest and diseases scouts in the fields. The team will also be the one to make decisions on how to manage pest and diseases affecting their production cluster areas.
Members of the brigade comprise rice cluster farmers who have undergone training on integrated pest management farmers field school (IPM-FFS) and hands-on training on pests monitoring and disease identification.
To date, RCPC has already organized six BPVB teams situated at the municipalities of Barotac Nuevo, Dingle and Sta. Barbara in Iloilo; Barbaza and Culasi in Antique; Ibajay, Numancia and Kalibo in Aklan. These groups constantly update data on pest surveillance through the established communication network.