DA to help IPs in Boracay to build their own vegetable, dairy farms
Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said a team of experts from the Department of Agriculture (DA) recently met with the members of the Tribal Community in Boracay to launch a program which would turn their land into an agro-tourism destination.
“The Ati Tribe of Boracay Island will no longer be just hawkers and spectators to the thriving tourism industry in their ancestral land which benefits big businessmen because they too will be part of the booming tourism industry when the popular world vacation destination reopens on October 26 this year,” Piñol said.
The program will be part of the 4Ks Program of the DA or Kabuhayan at Kaunlaran ng Kababayang Katutubo.
The 4Ks Program includes the planting of industrial trees like Falcata and Gmelina to be intercropped with Coffee, Cacao, Black Pepper or Abaca and rootcrops like organic Ube and Camote.
“In Boracay where the Ati, who once upon a time owned the whole island but now have been squeezed into a two-hectare area which they have fought hard to retain, will become part of a variant of the 4Ks Program,” Piñol said.
“Part of the two-hectare area of the Boracay Ati will be transformed into a vegetable production area using a solar-powered greenhouse and dairy goat milk parlor while a portion will be used for the establishment of an Organic Restaurant or eatery where indigenous food recipes could be offered to tourists,” he further said.
Piñol said the launch of the 4Ks program in Boracay is part of the DA’s special program in celebration of its 120th anniversary this year.
With funds coming from the DA and assisted by workers of the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI), a tribal-inspired hostel complete with facilities for training and seminars will also be established.