Current issues application and practice

Agriculture is very important in the economy of a country especially among developing countries like the Philippines. It provides food for the nation’s inhabitants. It supplies the raw materials needed by the other sectors of the economy such as the manufacturing, trading and services sectors. Agricultural products are an important source of exports for the country. It also generates employment especially among those living in the rural areas. Approximately 30 million hectares or 40 percent of the total land area of the country is classified as farm lands. The country is composed of 7,107 islands with a total coastline of about 18,000 kilometers and which boast of bountiful fishing areas. Farming and fishing are major sources of livelihood for most people in the rural areas. The food crops produced by the farm lands are used for local consumption while some crops are exported. One then wonders why inspire of the rich natural resources of the country it has remained to be a Third World country. The answer is simple. There is not enough government support being given to the industry. Without the necessary government initiatives to improve the agricultural sector, one cannot expect the industry to grow. The people who rely on agriculture are not given the opportunity to raise their income. thus, pushing the economy downwards. To determine the impact of agriculture in the Philippine economy, recent developments in the industry must be examined. In 2010, despite having vast agricultural lands and an ideal geographical location, the agriculture and fishery sector contributed only17 percent to the gross domestic product of the Philippines, a .34 percent decline from the previous year (Bureau of Agricultural Statistics (BAS), 2011). Compared to last year’s level, the gross value of agricultural output rose by 15.97 percent to P706.4 billion at current prices. The BAS also reported that of the country’s total labor force of 38.89 million, about 11.96 million persons or 33 percent were employed in the agriculture sector. During the first half of 2010, the daily nominal wages of workers in palay farms in Philippine pesos was P227.23 while those in corn farms earned P175.25. In terms of support services, government expenditures in agriculture amounted to P89.22 billion or six percent of the national expenditures, which represents an increase of 9.58 percent from last year. In the case of irrigation, only 49 percent of the total potential irrigable area is irrigated. The production performance of the agricultural sector in 2010 showed that output of palay and corn dropped by 3.04 percent and 9.34 percent, respectively. Coconut production registered a loss of one percent in the same way as sugarcane also recorded a loss of 21.82 percent. On the contrary, production output for mango, tobacco, onion, cabbage and eggplant grew by more than three percent (BAS, 2011). While agricultural products did not show remarkable improvements, the livestock production went the opposite direction (BAS, 2011). Carabao production increased by 5.05 percent, cattle at 2.71 percent, hog at 1.11 percent and goat at 1.38 percent. Likewise, production of dairy products grew by 11.14 percent. Chicken meat production increased by 4.01 percent and chicken eggs grew by 5.12 percent. Among the major livestock products only duck meat and duck egg production declined by 8.24 percent and 7.44 percent, respect

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