Agriculture Secretary William Dar recently launched the book “Beyond Buzzwords: Transforming Philippine Agriculture” at the Agricultural Training Institute in Quezon City.
“Buzzwords are often dismissed because of over-use. Through this book, I invite readers to go past the rhetoric and use these buzzwords to drive a meaningful discussion to promote growth and development, diversity, inclusivity, and sustainability,” Dar said in the book introduction.
The book is a compendium of selected speeches of the agriculture chief delivered at international conferences, public gatherings, and various public fora as secretary from August 2019 to 2022.
“It is important to document and share to the world or to a wider audience meaningful discourse, perspectives, and directions that inspire learning and transformations in the sector.”
During the book launch, the agriculture head explained that it is important to document and share to the world or to a wider audience meaningful discourse, perspectives, and directions that inspire learning and transformations in the sector.
He challenged other officials of the Department of Agriculture (DA) to have their own publications.
Dar also reflected on his second stint as agriculture secretary saying that he is happy to have come this far with the DA and for having introduced many ideas, strategies, and programs to set the foundation for transforming Philippine agriculture.
“Yes (I am satisfied), considering all the circumstances. Pumasok ako, almost the last three years of the President, but in spite that ay hinabol natin na dapat ang isang bahay, isang institusyon ay dapat may ipundar na solid foundation. At iyon po ang nagawa natin. That’s a legacy by itself,” he said.
Dar recognized the inputs and effort of the entire OneDA family in pushing for the OneDA Reform Agenda and its key strategies to attain the vision of “Masaganang Ani at Mataas na Kita.”
“We build institutions that can stand the test of time.”
“Slowly, we are now putting all the other components of that institution. We build institutions that can stand the test of time. And that’s the kind of vision that we have – Philippine agriculture that will be resilient, that can feed the country, that will make the farmers empowered and become prosperous,” he stressed.
Dar also noted that there is a new world order shaping up, which compels the DA to rework its goal and harness “everything possible to produce almost all the food that we have here”.
He added that the food sovereignty goal needs to be properly worked out and the DA management should keep learning and being open to developments so that strategies can be attuned to properly handle what is happening in the agriculture sector.
“We believe that there is merit to pursuing further this OneDA Reform Agenda and hoping that the next administration will embrace at least the idea of having to have a food systems approach and a value chain approach, no longer just production which is the mindset of the DA early on,” Dar concluded.