The National Organic Agriculture Program (NOAP) of the Department of Agriculture (DA) conducted its end-of-program assessment project that was commissioned to the Development Academy of the Philippines (DAP) last February 13-15, 2019 at Baguio City.

The Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) was among the five (5) regions identified for the program assessment of the NOAP implementation.

The NOAP serves as the guide for the implementation of Organic Agriculture under the Department of Agriculture and its implementing units. It also includes a system for evaluation and monitoring as one of the components and implementing strategies.

The program aims to promote, propagate, further develop and implement the practice of organic agriculture in the Philippines towards a competitive and sustainable organic agriculture industry.

The End-of-Program Assessment for NOAP covers the implementation of the program from March 2012- December 2016, national in scope.

The assessment aims to look at the over-all accomplishment of the program in the region in terms of achieved results of the four (4) years implementation and its impact on the objectives of the program in relation to the Organic Act of 2010 (Republic Act No. 10068).

DA-RFO-CAR Regional Organic Agriculture Program Focal Person Lilibeth C. Paraoan encouraged the participants to share lessons learned on implementing the Organic Agriculture program and ways to improve the programs and projects better.

Project Assessment Team Leader Clarence Pascual of DAP emphasized that the activity will identify the lessons and insights on the implementation of the NOAP as to the major criteria which are appropriateness, effectiveness and efficiency. He added that the activity will be a learning experience to further improve the implementation of programs and projects in relation to organic agriculture.

During the 3-day activity, interviews, focused group discussion (FGD), visits on market outlets, and on-site survey was conducted.

Participants were from the farmer beneficiaries of the program; local government units (LGUs) from Tublay, Itogon, Sablan, La Trinidad, Benguet and Ifugao; implementing agencies from Agricultural Training Institute-Cordillera Administrative Region (ATI-CAR) and Benguet State University (BSU); and the Regional Organic Agriculture Program (ROAP) and Agribusiness and Marketing Assistance Division (AMA) of DA-RFO-CAR.

Results of the assessment are being consolidated by the Development Academy of the Philippines (DAP) and this will be published within the year (2019).

In addition, during the coverage (2012-2016), the Regional Organic Agriculture Program reported that there are around 6, 806 farmer practicing organic agriculture in the region.

The Cordillera also received the Outstanding Small Farmer (Individual Category) by the person of Rogel Marsan from Benguet and the La Trinidad Organic Multipurpose Cooperative (LaTOP) from Benguet as the Outstanding Farmer Group in 2015. This was given during the the National Organic Agriculture Achievers Award (NOAAA).

In the same year, Valerio Ramos from Benguet bagged the Outstanding Organic Farmer during the Search for the National Gawad Saka Award.//HDanis with reports from ROAP