Environmental conservationist farmer group Ugat-Uhay Farmers Association showcased their newly-released inbred and hybrid rice varieties and their localized technologies, the Kwebo, and Capillarigation.
The group has just finished their four-month long program with the Farmers’ Field School (FFS), a season-long training of expertise with the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice), in Zaragoza, Nueva Ecija.
The farmers localized a storage they call Kwebo–merged Filipino words kweba (cave) and kubo (hut). It is said to be shaped like kubos that are as sturdy as a kwebas. On the other hand, Capillarigation is a low-cost irrigation system made of plastic straws and bottles. Instead of drippers, it uses capillary wicks, which stabilizes the water supply and reduces leaks and filtration.
Ugat-Uhay Farmers Association joined forces with the Pinagbuklod na Adhika Agricultural Cooperative, a part of rice-based enterprise community RiceBis led by PhilRice, in taking care of buffalos from the Philippine Carabao Center (PCC). The latter group have already collaborated with PCC last year in feeding carabaos with rice straws. They also evaluated their rice varieties, the National Seed Industry Council Rice #s 238, 300, 400, 402, 438, 440, and Mestiso 20.
The FFS is partnered by the Rice Business Innovations System Community Program (RiceBIS).