08 March 2006

Filipino farmers to access agricultural information and technologies through SMS

According to a report in The News Today, farmers in the Western Visayas region of the Philippines can now access information through the use of cell phones or short message services (SMS).

The facility will be implemented through Farmers' Information and Technology Service (FITS) Centers and the Magsaska Siyentista (MS) program. FITS Centers are one-stop information shop hosted by local government units which aimed to improve access of farmers, traders, processors, entrepreneurs, and students to information and technologies in agriculture. Magsasaka Siyentistas are outstanding farmers who act as facilitators and initiators of technology development and transfer processes.

The FITS Centers and MSs will use cellular phones to bring the problems and concerns of farmers to the members of the Western Visayas Agriculture and Resources Research and Development Consortium and the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resources Research and Development.

The use of SMS is part of the Knowledge Networking towards Enterprising Agricultural Communities programme - K-AgriNet which aims to improve access to information, modern technologies, indigenous knowledge by farmers, fisherfolk and agribusiness entrepreneurs through ICT.




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