Agricultural sector plays a vital role in our country. The economy of the Philippines is still largely dependent on agriculture which provides 22 percent of the gross domestic product. The total land area in the country is 30 million hectares and nearly half of the labor force is employed in Agriculture. It is estimated that as much as 47 percent of the population is dependent in agriculture either in migration to urban areas or abroad, more than half of the population of the country still resides in rural areas. The major products of agricultural sector are rice, corn, coconut, sugar, banana, livestock, poultry and fisheries.
The agricultural sector in the Philippines is divided into four sub sectors compromising of farming, livestock, fisheries and forestry. The rice and corn are significant products that accounts for 50 percent of the agricultural produce in our country. With these products come big production and more opportunities to all Filipinos.
Together with the present scenario of continue globalization and industrialization of our country is the decrease in the number of people who are interested to agricultural activities therefore results to many dilemmas like low production rate, inefficient works, poor research and technology and insufficient extension programs and services to rural areas especially to small-scale farmers because there are only few who exchange ideas on how to improve the agricultural sector. If this will continue time will come that there will be no more agricultural products to be harvested, no more vegetables and meat in the market and no more fish in the ponds therefore, there will be a food shortage.
Lack of Education regarding agriculture is the main reason why young people tend to choose courses that are not applicable in our country. Majority takes higher courses like Information Technology, Nursing, Business Management and Engineering courses that somewhat well but has no capacity to address and solve one of the major problems of our country which is the shortage of supply of food (low production). Increasing the awareness and interest of the young people especially students regarding agricultural studies will greatly help our country to become productive and improve its research and technology development.
There are so many opportunities in agriculture. Different universities and state colleges all over the Philippines provide agricultural education courses that will upgrade the knowledge of the students to improve the agriculture of our nation. For all we know, agriculture is the backbone of every successful nation. There is no success country that did not focus its improvement on their agricultural sector. So, let us all help together to improve our own agricultural sector. The government is encouraging those graduating students in high school to take up agricultural courses and they are also granting scholarships for agricultural students.
Our country needs agriculturists that will raise our agricultural production. Come and take part. Our country needs you!!!
By: Mrs. Zulita I. Villones