Pangasinan Fourth District Rep. Christopher de Venecia believes the promotion of organic farming, which is more environment -friendly than the use of chemical-based fertilizers, is part of good governance.
He has encouraged farmers in Dagupan, Mangaldan, San Fabian, San Jacinto and Manaoag to produce healthy foods and earn extra income by opening their fields to tourists who want to learn from them and appreciate their labor.
De Venecia urged the farmers also to consider planting dragon fruits, cacao, ylang-ylang and soya beans to boost their incomes and help hasten the growth of agro-tourism
Health-conscious people in Manila and in the provinces are always looking for organic vegetables that fetch prices from P300 to P400 per kilo.
To showcase organic farming, De Venecia led newsmen to a model farm in San Fabian planted with dragon fruits and in-between them were cacao plants which can be showcased to tourists.
While he noted that there is also a big potential in organic farming in San Jacinto, Mangaldan and Manaoag, he said the focus on San Fabian will help increase the organic yield which is still well below the line," De Venecia told newsmen.
De Venecia is organizing organic farmers in San Fabian into an association and pledged to invite experts to their place to teach them not only in vermiculture and composting but also in preparing healthy foods for fowls, goats, cattle and carabaos.
Organic farming requires a change of mindset. and farmers who are into this must be willing to work harder, knowing that the products they would soon be raising and harvesting are of higher quality and good for the health, unlike the usual chemical farming, he said.
With organic farming, waiting will be longer than in farming using the usual chemical-based fertilizers but the results will definitely be better.
Members of San Fabian Organic Farmers' Association produce their own fertilizers.
De Venecia said he is set to establish a demo farm in San Fabian with the help of the Department of Agriculture to showcase organic farming and produce seedlings for the farmers.