The first and only children’s book on biotech corn titled “ Lina’s Town Rises Again” will be included in the agriculture exhibit of the Malacañang of the North beginning 18 October 2019. Displaying the book will hopefully get the young visitors interested in modern agriculture and encourage them to learn more about it,” said Ian Raquel, Tourism Head of the Province of Ilocos Norte.
Malacañang of the North has over a million visitors annually and most of them are students. Lately, enrollment in agriculture courses has declined. “This is alarming considering agriculture involves about 40% of Filipino workers and contributes an average of 20% to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP),” said Chat Garrido-Ocampo, author of the said children’s book and Corporate Affairs Head of Legacy Monsanto Philippines.
“We have to get more of our youth interested in agriculture. The future of our agriculture sector lies in their hands and if they do not know or appreciate modern agricultural tools and solutions, how do we expect our agriculture sector to survive, more so flourish?” Ocampo said.
Meantime, Raquel said that encouraging the youth to be interested in modern agriculture is something that that the Late President Ferdinand Marcos wanted and envisioned. “President Marcos became personally interested in the field of biotechnology because it had all the indications of being the technology of the future,” said Raquel.
It may be recalled that President Marcos established the Institute of Biotechnology at the University of the Philippines at Los Baños as his legacy he wished Filipinos to remember me years after he is no longer here on earth.
“Lina’s Town Rises Again” was inspired by a true story of how planting biotech corn helped a lady farmer in Mindanao recover all her losses when Typhoon Pablo devastated her small town and how she was able to help her neighbors and her entire community to become prosperous as well.
Photo: Children’s book author Chat Garrido-Ocampo hands over a copy of her book on biotech corn to Ilocos Norte Tourism Head Ian Raquel for display at the Malacaῆang of the North