Press Release
January 6, 2021

Villar commends the passage of amended Organic Agriculture Act of 2020

Senator Cynthia Villar expressed gratitude to President Rodrigo Duterte as he has signed into law a measure seeking to strengthen organic agriculture in the Philippines. Republic Act (RA) 11511, an amendment to RA 10068 or the Organic Agriculture Act of 2010, was signed on December 23 last year,released on Tuesday January 5, 2021, and will take effect 15 days following its publication.

Villar, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Food, and the principal sponsor of the law said; " Itwill provide for a more affordable system of organic certification, which will allow small farmers to benefit from producing organic products." She reiterates that, "The most important feature of this law is that, it will allow small farmers to get certification at P600 to P2000 per year, as against the international certificate of P100,000 per year."

"The exorbitant cost in the past prevents small farmers from practicing organic farming and also makes organic products expensive for many Filipinos," Villar added. VIllar who believes that small farmers constitutes a big chunk of the farming sector and should be given the opportunity to benefit from a more affordable system of organic certification, for without them organic farming will not be developed. "The law aside from environmental protection, the increased in farmer's profitability will be a great motivation to promote and develop the organic industry. It promotes the use of natural and farm-based resources and inputs like organic fertilizer, which would yield to less input cost on the part of the farmers." Villar stressed.

The senator has been promoting the composting of kitchen and garden wastes into organic fertilizer that farmers can produce instead of buying in the market. Accordingly, the new law establishes the Participatory Guarantee System (PGS), which refers to a locally-focused quality assurance system and shall be the mechanisms in which farmer engaged in organic agriculture shall be certified.

It also creates the National Organic Agriculture Program-National Program Coordinating Office (NOAP-NPCO) to manage the effective implementation of the National Organic Agriculture Program, and will serve as planning, secretariat and coordinating office of the NOAB.

Further, the new law also restructures, strengthens, and empowers the Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Standards (BAFS), which will provide technical assistance to the NOAB and the NOAP-NPCO.

Senator Cynthia Villar as the principal author, put her high hopes for the proper implementation of the law, and mentioned that, over 165,000 organic farming practitioners would benefit from the Amended Organic Agriculture Law, and will sustain the growth of organic agriculture in the Philippines, as well as environmental protection.

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