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Trivias about the Philippine Rice Research Institute

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The Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice), the country’s lead agency in rice science and development, will celebrate its 25 years today, Nov. 5, focusing on Rice Science for Development (S4D).

With S4D as its rallying call for five to ten years, PhilRice’s medium and long-term corporate plans centered on helping to attain and sustain rice self-sufficiency, reducing poverty and malnutrition, and achieving competitiveness in agricultural science and technology.

Based at Science City of Muñoz, Nueva Ecija, PhilRice has been responding to the rice farmers’ needs and the country’s endeavors to attain rice self-sufficiency since the Institute’s creation in Nov. 5, 1985.

Other than helping the country achieve rice self-sufficiency, an external review on PhilRice’s impact revealed that for each peso invested on the Institute, a net return or benefit of P4.45 for the Philippine economy was gained.

An occasion connecting the Institute’s seven branch stations across the country, the three-day celebration starting Nov.3, includes the following activities: spiritual enrichment, Santiago R. Obien seminar series on improving research management of R&D institutions, tribute to PhilRice benefactors, and employees’ recognition.

Sen. Francis N. Pangilinan, chair of the Senate Committee on Agriculture; USec Bernadette Romulo-Puyat of the Department of Agriculture; retired Chief Justice Reynato S. Puno; and Dr. Achim Dobermann, deputy director-general for research of the International Rice Research Institute, are the event’s guest and resource speakers.

“It is my honor to lead the PhilRice family in celebrating our 25th Anniversary. Having started at PhilRice in 1986 as its first employee, I have seen PhilRice from its infancy to adulthood… It is our collective desire to see PhilRice remain responsive and relevant to the increasing needs of our country and its people,” PhilRice Executive Director Ronilo A. Beronio said.

Looking forward, Beronio said the Institute maintains the increasing relevance of its regular research activities on varietal improvement involving inbreds and hybrids, and considering various growing conditions and productivity potentials; integrated crop management, development of farm machinery and improvement of mechanization level; and proactive policy research and advocacy. PhilRice also intensifies roles of biotechnology and ICT as enabling technologies for its research and development.

Beronio said through scientific collaboration and partnerships and support of the national government and the department of agriculture, the Institute will strive to help the country achieve rice self-sufficiency and food security.

“More aggressive and proactive efforts will be done to support the commercialization of technologies. We will also continue to foster overseas development assistance as such collaborations will strengthen international linkages of the Institute,” he stressed.

PhilRice is a government corporate entity attached to the Department of Agriculture. The Institute is created through Executive Order 1061 issued by then Pres. Ferdinand E. Marcos.