The State of Biotechnology In the Philippines Today

Through the collaboration of the South East Asian Ministers of Education Organization (SEAMEO), South East Asian Center for Graduate Studies and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA), Department of Agriculture, Science Communicators Philippines and the Biotechnology Coalition of the Philippines abiotech activity was held last September 8, 2023 at the SEARCA Drilon hall, Los Banos Laguna entitled “What’s Up, “B” Conversations with the Media on the Status of Philippine Ag-Biotech.

A hybrid event by which some participants participated on site and some are in zoom. The welcome remarks was done by SEARCA Executive Director Dr. Glen Gregorio via Zoom.

Dr. Rhodora Romero-Aldemita, the Executive Director of the ISAAA Inc., also the Director of the Global Knowledge Center on Biotechnology with her presentation regarding the “Global Status of Agricultural Biotechnology (including biotech crops in the pipeline for the Philippines). According to her, the reason why they are encouraging the planting of BT Cotton is that the cotton industry here in the country is just recovering mainly because all varieties of cotton endemic in the country is susceptible to be infested by insects.

Another speaker is Ms. Ma. Lorelie U. Agbagala about the Revised Regulatory System for Biotech Crops in the Philippines. Meanwhile Ms. Geronima P. Eusebio, the Head of the Biotech Office of Bureau of Plant Industry of the Department of Agriculture as she explains about Gene Editing Guidelines in the Philippines.

The Media also asked about the proliferation of a single egg with double yolk in the markets of Bulacan and according to Dr. Maribel M. Zaporteza ng University of the Philippines Los Banos in her presentation Applications of Modern Biotechnology for Animals she says that the egg is normal because even in chickens there are twins.

It signifies the enormous contribution of biotechnology particularly in medicine and pharmaceutics because most vaccines used can never be manufactured without the intervention of biotechnology particularly the speed of manufacturing.

There are also studies at the Philippine Genome Center Biodiversity Division about them collecting data in the preservation of our flora and fauna for conservation and breeding purposes.

At the press conference or free flowing discussion with the panelists: Dr. Rhodora Romero-Aldemita, Ms. Ma. Lorelie U. Agbagala, Ms. Geronima P. Eusebio and Dr. Maribel M. Zaporteza in which they seek to answer questions coming from the media while they had answered most of the questions some were not answered like the question on goat milk which can be augmented for dairy purposes and the plight of the endangered Tamaraws of Mindoro.

While Atty Melvin Calimag the President of Sci CommPH had the closing remarks, serving as the emcee is Mr. Jerome Cayton C Baradas ang Project Coordinator II-APNR Knowledge Platform SEARCA.

Part of the opening presentation revolve on the question of some which cannot be “business as usual” like Climate change, food insecurity, population growth and hunger that is why Agri-Biotech is essential

Our DNA contain the genetic code of life. in 2002 the Philippines has started to infuse baccilus torrengensis in corn then that was the start of BT corn, around the world more countries plant biotech crops to increase their food production.

According to studies more farmers increase their income planting agri-biotech crops and the Philippines is number one in the world in terms of regulations and the approved crops to plant

Rice, Corn, Eggplant and now Cotton according to the South East Asian Center for Graduate Study and Research In Agriculture (SEARCA) in their discussion with the media.///Mj Olvina-Balaguer, 09053611058, and DZMJ ONLINE DAWAH ZAKAT MAKABULUHANG JORNALISMO YOUR HAPPINESS CHANNEL