On May 24, 2024, the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) Region VIII, led by Acting Regional Manager Engr. Jaime C. De Jesus together with 12 Irrigators Associations (IAs) of Bito and Tibak River Irrigation Systems under the Biliran-Leyte del Norte-Leyte del Sur Irrigation Management Office (BLNLSIMO) signed the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) for the Rice Contract Farming in Region VIII at Brgy. Malitbogay, Javier, Leyte.

This collaboration between NIA and IA aims to enhance the farmers’ livelihood, and increase agricultural productivity of the region.  Under the MOA, farmer-beneficiaries will receive P50,000.00 per hectare for their farm production cost and an incentive of P50,000.00 if they produce 5 metric tons of palay. This initiative covers a total service area of, 1,871 hectares of service area, benefiting 1,756 farmer-beneficiaries.

Rice Contract Farming is one of the programs of NIA Administrator Eduardo Eddie G. Guillen that aims to ensure sustainable farming, food security, and uplift the lives of the Filipino farmers.

Present during the event were NIA Region VIII Acting Regional Manager Engr. Jaime C. De Jesus, Engr. Conrado M. Samson, Division Manager of BLNLSIMO, 12 IAs represented by their IA Presidents with their members. Also present during the event are the Local Chief Executives of the Municipality of Abuyog and Javier, Hon. Lemuel Gin K. Traya and Hon. Michael Dragon T. Javier, respectively along with their staff, Nikos Enage, Municipal Administrator of Sta. Fe and Municipal Agriculturist Teresita J. Lago, Joeffrey M. Plata, Assistant Branch Manager of NFA (Leyte Branch), Gerard Palo, representative from Department of Agriculture – Rice Program, other partner agencies and NIA BLNLSIMO employees.