The Department of Agriculture (DA) will soon distribute to farmers the so-called Interventions Monitoring Card (IMC), which can serve as both an identification card and a cash card.

This is in line with the continued updating of the Registry System for Basic Sectors in Agriculture (RSBSA), which is the government’s master list of agriculture workers in the country.

Agriculture Secretary William Dar said with IMC, farmers who are already listed in RSBSA can now have easy access to government interventions, starting with the second round of the Rice Farmers’ Financial Assistance (RFFA) worth P5,000 each.

Department of Agriculture Secretary William Dar (Photo courtesy of the DA)

RFFA is funded by the excess tariffs collected from imported rice as provided under the Rice Tariffication Law (RTL) or Republic Act (RA) 11203. The RFFA payout will commence in October.

Under RTL, the RFFA will be given to rice farmers owning or tilling rice farms two hectares and below, whether they continue rice farming or not.

The IMC distribution includes farmers of other crops, fishers, hog raisers, and other agri-fishery workers and stakeholders.

In a statement, DA said the IMC is a result of the DA’s partnership with the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), Rural Bank Association of the Philippines (RBAP), and service provider SQuidPay.

The partnership was formalized with the signing of a memorandum of agreement among Dar, DBP President and CEO Emmanuel Herbosa, RBAP President Liza Timbol, and SQuidPay President May Cuevas.

Since the RSBSA was updated in late 2019, more than 3.55 million farmers and fishers have already enrolled, of which 79 percent or 2.8 million were already encoded through the farmers and fisherfolk registration system (FFRS) online platform.

The DA — through its field operations service (FOS), information and communication technology service (ICTS), and regional field offices (RFOs) — in partnership with local government units (LGUs) continues to validate and enroll farmers and fisherfolk in the RSBSA.

Source: Manila Bulletin (