Last July 12, participants from various industries convened at UA&P as the Center for Food and Agri Business (CFA) held its Mid-Year Food and Agri Business Conference entitled “Achieving Change for Inclusive Growth.” The speakers included CFA Director Dr. Rolando Dy who discussed agricultural scenarios from the past year, and Senator Francis Pangilinan, chairman of the Philippine Senate Committee on Agriculture and Food, who talked about reducing poverty in the agricultural sector.
(See video of Sen. Pangilinan giving his talk at UA&P below.)
Sen. Pangilinan, the former Presidential Assistant for Food Security and Agricultural Modernization, emphasized the importance of sustainability in alleviating poverty and improving the income of those working in agriculture. He said that despite the economic growth posted by the Aquino government in recent years that growth has not been inclusive of farmers and fishermen who remain among the poorest sectors in the Philippines.
Sen. Pangilinan said the current government should value farm workers as vital though underappreciated contributors to society, and to focus agricultural programs toward increasing their income as a benchmark for success.
The conference also featured speakers from the rice, broiler and food service industries: Dr. Henry Lim Bon Liong (Chief Executive Officer, SL Agritech Corporation), Atty. Elias Jose Inciong (President, United Broilers Raisers Association), and Sofronio Ampo (First Foods Food Service, Inc.), respectively.