Top Philippine Farmers Recognized at TOFARM Awards; Isabela Farmer Brings Home the Crown

A great evening of recognition to the Philippine farmers who have shared their whole lives giving service by producing our foods. A worth to remember event that made me realize more how important farmers were. A grand reunion of farmers from different places known with their skills and strategies in agriculture. People mostly from urban places tend to forget sometimes how rice was produced and who produced them. Now, this was one night where our eyes have been opened to reach into the people who makes the world still living and worthwhile living in.

Mamerto B. Rarangol of San Mateo, Isabela, a farmer who champions the value of education and the use of the scientific method to maximize farming yields and make every square foot of his land productive was named Farmer of the Year at the TOFARM Awards Night that honor The Outstanding Filipino Farmers of the Year.

Mamerto B. Rarangol was named The Outstanding Farmer of the Year at Raffles Hotel in Makati. Rarangol influenced his fellow farmers to venture into hybrid rice, now fast becoming a major crop in San Mateo, Isabela. He has taught other farmers the importance of being educated about fertilizer and having their soils evaluated for better production.He believes in the use of scientific method to get better results.


TOFARM, a search and awards program launched last July by the Junior Chamber International Philippines (JCIP) and Universal Harvester, Inc. (UHI) aims to refocus attention on the importance and viability of agriculture as an industry and vocation. Twenty-seven notable representatives of the agricultural sector hailed Farmer of the Year by a Board of Judges composed of industry leaders and recognized specialists in the agricultural sector.

JCIP President Ivan Ruste said JCIP undertook the TOFARM project to remind the youth about their role in active citizenship. “Agriculture, the backbone industry of the Philippines, cannot be sustained unless we involve our youth and refocus interest in this sector. Through TOFARM, we want to show our youth that farming is a noble profession that is also lucrative and worthwhile. At the same time we want to recognize the role that generations of farmers have contributed to Philippine society and our economy. We thank our Organizing Partner, Universal Harvester, Inc. for supporting this project very generously and inspiring our farmers to reach new heights.”

Universal Harvester, Inc. represented by its Executive Vice President Mrs. Milagros Ong-How, said UHI fully supports JCIP in paying tribute to Filipino farmers. “Through the search and awards, TOFARM hopes to make agriculture attractive for the next generation and for the entire country as well. TOFARM will be a continuing program that will help support and inspire the agricultural sector, Mrs. How added.

Rommel Cunanan, TOFARM project chairman, JCI Philippines, said that besides recognizing the achievements and contributions made by farmers to the Philippine society and the economy, the program also aims to promote farming among younger generations. The Junior Chamber International is a worldwide federation of young leaders and entrepreneurs aged 18-40.