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PBBM, Bagong Pilipinas faces of 2023 MMSU-PhilRice Rice Paddy Art

LAOAG CITY, Ilocos Norte (PIA) – A vast rice paddy at the Mariano Marcos State University (MMSU) has been transformed into a work of art as it features the image of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. and his governance tagline, “Bagong Pilipinas.”

Launched on September 11 by MMSU and Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice), President Marcos Jr. graced the ceremonial unveiling of the rice paddy art at the University’s Extension Demonstration Area in the main campus.

This also coincides with the 106th birth anniversary of his father, the late President Ferdinand E. Marcos Sr., the founder of MMSU and PhilRice.

The president was joined by First Lady Liza Araneta-Marcos, Ilocos Norte First District Representative Sandro Marcos, Second District Representative Angelo Marcos Barba, Governor Matthew Marcos Manotoc, Vice Governor Cecilia Marcos, MMSU President Dr. Shirley Agrupis, and PhilRice Executive Director Dr. John de Leon.

With a new era of Marcos legacy, MMSU and PhilRice featured the president in support of his vision for a “Bagong Pilipinas,” as well as ensuring food security and reinvigorated agriculture industry in the country.

“It [rice paddy art] signifies our unyielding commitment to achieving food sufficiency, a goal deeply rooted in the vision of Bagong Pilipinas,” said MMSU President Agrupis.

She also added that the paddy art is a tribute to Marcos Jr, whose accomplishments and initiatives as the President of the Republic of the Philippines and Secretary of the Department of Agriculture (DA) have contributed to the aspirations for a progressive Philippines.

RICE PADDY ART. President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. and the First Family posed with the rice paddy art created by MMSU and PhilRice featuring him and his Bagong Pilipinas slogan. He is joined by Governor Matthew Marcos Manotoc, Vice Governor Cecilia Araneta-Marcos, Batac City Mayor Albert Chua, Second District Representative Angelo Marcos Barba, MMSU President Dr. Shirley Agrupis, and PhilRice Executive Director Dr. John de Leon. (PIA/JCL)

Meanwhile, the president has also appreciated the kind gesture of the University in featuring his face for this year’s rice paddy art.

He also underscored the University’s continuing pursuit for agricultural innovations, citing that MMSU was historically a collection of agricultural colleges and high schools put together and made into “Mariano Marcos State University.”

“It was the first state university that my father built. It was his long-time dream to build a good university for our people here in Ilocos Norte. And from those beginnings, the research that has come out of MMSU has been exemplary. Of course, added to that, we have also PhilRice, the PhilRice offices are also here in Batac,” said Marcos Jr.

He also went on to discuss maximizing the use of new technology from the laboratory to the rice field to ensure stable supply of rice in the country.

“Yan ang gagawin ngayon ng DA na kukunin ang pinakamagandang teknolohiya lalo ngayon technologies become so important – the new technologies have become so important because of climate change,” added Marcos Jr.

RICE PLANTERS. President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., the First Family, and national and local officials, posed with the rice planters who are students of the Mariano Marcos State University. (PIA/JCL)

With the imposition of a mandated price ceiling for rice recently, the president mentioned the need to control the prices of rice “because the markets are very volatile. So, we are trying to stabilize it here in the Philippines. Kailangang taasan natin ang production natin.”

In addition, he also wants to ensure that the government will make sure that the increase of production will also benefit the farmers in the country.

“It is equally important for me that the farmer makes a good living,” said the chief executive.

The rice paddy art, which is also aimed at boosting agri-tourism in Ilocos Norte, also seeks to inspire the young generation to take agriculture-related courses.

Other faces that have been featured in the MMSU-PhilRice rice paddy art since 2018 were former and the late President Ferdinand E. Marcos Sr., MMSU ACHIEVE Agenda, former First Lady Imelda R. Marcos, Dr. Santiago Obien, former MMSU president and PhilRice’s first executive director, Don Mariano Marcos, and General Artemio Ricarte, father of the Philippine Army. (MJTAB PIA Ilocos Norte)

About the Author

Ma. Joreina Therese Blanco


Region 1

Ma. Joreina Therese A. Blanco is an Information Officer II of the Philippine Information Agency Ilocos Norte Information Center based in Laoag City, Ilocos Norte. She is currently the Information Center Manager of PIA Ilocos Norte.

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