By Kristel Merle, DA-AFID
In an effort to digitize Philippine agriculture, the Department of Agriculture (DA) through Planters Products Inc. (PPI) and the Satsure AG signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) on June 8, to provide better crop insurance in the country using satellite technology.
The MOA signing was witnessed by Agriculture Secretary William Dar and Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) President Atty. Jovy Bernabe.
The project, with the initial funding support of P5 million, targets to provide satellite imaging for the 100,000 hectares planted with rice and 40,000 hectares planted with various crops within six months. It will be piloted in Nueva Ecija, Iloilo, and North Cotabato.
“We welcome this partnership between PPI and Satsure AG. It will help in our ongoing efforts to provide our farmers with direct and targeted assistance to improve their productivity,” Dar said.
Dar said the project will also help the DA to improve its disaster response, particularly on risk insurance. He said crop monitoring should be improved.
“The traditional source of information which relies heavily on fieldwork will be insufficient in the country. As we modernize our agriculture sector, we must continuously explore for relevant technology to increase sufficiency and productivity,” Dar said.
The Satsure AG is a developer based in Switzerland whose works include remote sensing satellite and other sensing sources to monitor agricultural crop portfolio and estimate agriculture yields with the objective of enabling better risk management and improve crop insurance and agriculture lending to farmers.