Iraya Farms is a social enterprise program of Gawad Kalinga and is building farming communities through cutting-edge farming technologies/processes

http://www.irayafarms.com/visiongoalsexecution.html


our vision

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Iraya Farms is building farming communities through cutting-edge farming technologies/processes and social enterprise, empowered by people with faith and patriotism; driven by a culture of caring and sharing, dedicated to eradicate poverty and restore human dignity.

our goal

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To render the poor farmers less poor by teaching them how to optimize rice production rather than giving them a bowl of rice today. In the process take a bite out of the country's dependence on imported rice.


execution

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Iraya Farms leases the land from the farmers on a “NET 50/50” split and hire them as partner workers. Iraya Farms funds, operates and manages the entire value chain from land preparation to marketing.  For the more financially, technically and socially advanced, we have other partnership arrangements. Employing GK's Big-Middle-Little Brother enterprise template, we install a team of seasoned business managers and farm technicians to run each farm as a business.

Using the SL8-H hybrid seeds, we employ cutting-edge farming technologies/processes, full mechanization and sound business practices. Not only do we provide an immediate income lift for the marginalized farmers, we keep the operations profitable in order to continue helping.

who we are

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Iraya Farms is a social enterprise program of Gawad Kalinga. While GK has built 2,000+ communities, the residents/beneficiaries have limited access to jobs or livelihoods to sustain themselves.

Iraya Farms is a Private-Public Partnership initiative, which convergences  corporate capital, social enterprise management,  cutting edge farming technologies, sound business practices, farmers’ industry, Gawad Kalinga's wholistic social development programs and government support. It aims to harness the county’s under utilized fully-irrigated rice farm assets to maximum productivity.  Its primary goals are to "make the poor farmers less poor" and end rice importation by 2013 .

The marginalized farmers continually struggle with capital consequently falling victims to predatory lenders who drive them deeper into a vicious cycle of poverty. Limited use of rice farming technologies and processes, lack of social preparedness and proper values, economies of scale, infrastructure, equipment and entrepreneurial discipline are key inhibitors to optimum productivity. Due to these challenges, they produce a disappointing average of 35 sacks per hectare. The  Philippines, a predominantly agricultural country has been importing rice for years.  Today, there is a  demand-supply gap  of 1.2 million metric tons of this staple crop. 


how we do it

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We fund, operate and manage the entire value chain from land preparation to marketing. Iraya Farms leases the land from the farmers on a "NET 50/50" share and hire them as partner workers. For the more financially, technically and socially advanced, we have other partnership arrangements. 

Employing GK's Big-Middle-Little Brother enterprise template, we install a team of seasoned business managers and farm technicians to run each farm as a business. We manage every activity to ensure that the land is impeccably prepped, the seeds germinate, the fertilizers are applied properly and the harvest ends up in our warehouses instead of cockfighting arenas. While we provide an immediate income lift to the marginalized farmers, we keep the operations profitable so we can continue to help.

what we've done

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The proof of concept was successfully implemented in Dolores, Eastern Samar harvesting an average of 232 sacks per hectare this past October. Using the SL-8H “miracle rice”, responsible input /pest management and corporate efficiencies, the farmers netted an average of P48,000.00 per hectare from both their harvest share and labor wages. Up from P3,000.00 (US$70.00) a year. Iraya Farms netted an equal amount which we roll into the next cropping and fund GK's social development programs.

“Increasing rice production has more than twice the global poverty reduction potential of any other agricultural product and very few other development investments have the same capacity to eradicate poverty,” said IRRI Director General Robert Zeigler

Wealth creation would all be for naught without GK's wholistic social development component. The ultimate goal is to equip the farmers with technical skills, business acumen and proper values so we can wean them to do this on their own. 

our stakeholders

Weary of "dole out" with less impact, the founder realigned personal philanthropy funds to seed and personally manage this social enterprise. It's in the belief that teaching farmers how to plant rice makes more sense than giving them a daily bowl of it. Hence, Benjie decided to give up a frustrating golfing obsession in the Bay Area to get muddy with the farmers in the Philippines. A benevolent dictator, he runs this as a profitable business in order to keep helping the less fortunate.

Inspired, encouraged and supported by college classmate Cito Lorenzo, they sowed the seeds of Iraya Farms. Ewit Villacarillo, Dolores' dynamic mayor gave us the initial push and all-out support. Henry Lim offered his "miracle rice" and Chito Santos came in to provide the fertilizers. The Department of Agriculture headed by Secretary Procy Alcala is committed to align with us. More stakeholders from both the private and public sectors and foreign entities have signified their support as we expand. Tony Meloto continues with his values formation.

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CITO LORENZO – Through the inspiration, encouragement and support of this like-hearted college classmate Iraya Farms came to being. A true man for others, his expertise and experience in agri-business having run Lapanday Foods, arguably the country's most successful agri entity, Cito continues to guide Iraya Farms' vision. His goodwill and dedication inspires other stakeholders to help.

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HENRY LIM – The father of 'hybrid rice', has untiringly propagated 'miracle rice' as a way to cover the country's rice demand-supply gap. This seed variety known to yield upwards of 350 cavans per hectare is what will ensure the continued success of Iraya Farms. He is so bullish with the SL8-H that he gambled on a 'plant now pay later' with us.

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CHITO SANTOS – Another college classmate who successfully runs Philippine Phosphate, the nation's leading fertilizer firm and a GK advocate, has enough faith in Iraya Farms' vision, model and our people, to provide tons of inputs to grow the 'miracle rice' on a 120 days terms.

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TONY MELOTO – The father of less fortunate Filipinos is the fuel that keeps the fire burning. Gawad Kalinga is more than just providing colorful homes to the poor. Its values formation programs and wholistic approach to social engineering is what will transform the Philippines out of poverty. Iraya Farms is the embodiment of GK's next phase: Social Artistry.

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MAYOR EWIT VILLACARILLO – Dolores' dynamic mayor. Our gracious host and biggest fan. She gave us all her small town's meager agri budget to jump start our demo. Her town's vast irrigated rice lands will usher in progress, turning this sleepy town into a city by 2013.

Food for the Hungry, Inc.

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Feed the Hungry, Inc. has partnered with us through a cash infusion. While they are dole out disaster relief practioners, they believe in sustainable philathrophy.
Iraya Farms’ Scheme – Ben Picardo tells us that his Iraya Farms has partnered with Gawad Kalinga in leasing fully-irrigated rice lands from farmers. Iraya funds and manages the entire value chain from land preparation to harvest. Using improved rice farming techniques, they run these as corporate farms employing the farmer-landowners as partner laborers.
Picardo says that their primary goals are to socio-economically empower the marginalized farmers with the ultimate aim of curbing dependency on imported rice. Starting from poverty’s “ground zero”, Dolores, Eastern Samar, their demo farm yielded an average of 11.6 tons per hectare. Now they are expanding to Narra, Palawan; Bago, Negros Occidental, and Cabiao, Nueva Ecija.

 advocate for:
http://www.gk1world.com [Gawad Kalinga, tagalog for "to give care"]

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About rictandag

http://about.me/rictandag http://LVHelpGro.net @rictandag @LVHelpGro Returned U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer, Tandag, Surigao del Sur, Republic of the Philippines 1979-1980; Financial Management training Program [FMP], G.E., Appliance Park, Louisville, Kentucky 1981-1982 Champion [two days] Jeopardy 1986 Attorney, Los Angeles, CA 1989-1995 Disabiility Rights Attorney, www.NDALC.org, Las Vegas 1998-1999 Immigration Asylum Attorney, throughout the State of Kansas 1999-2001 Supply Logistics Specialist, UPS Las Vegas, 2006- present http://www.ups-scs.com [business] http://InternationalAidAdvocate.com http://rictandag.tumblr.com/ http://www.facebook.com/rick.passo http://www.linkedin.com/in/rickpasso http://www.twitter.com/rictandag http://paper.li/rictandag http://rictandag.i.ph/blogs/rictandag/ http://ricktandagvegas.blogspot.com/ https://rictandag.wordpress.com/ advocate for: http://www.gk1world.com [Gawad Kalinga, tagalog for "to give care"] http://www.jacintoandlirio.com http://www.civitan.net/diverse http://www.Rags2Riches.ph
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