Dr. Myer Guerrero Mula
A renowned international scientist, he was the (Former) Senior Scientist on Seed System of the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), India from 2008 to 2016. He has been instrumental in enhancing, strengthening and developing seed system model to sustain quality peanut, pigeonpea, and chickpea seeds in India, Africa and Philippines.
At the beginning of his career, he was involved with the private agricultural sector for 10 years then moved through the government sector with various designations under the Department of Agriculture – Cordillera Administrative Region. He has served as the Rice and Corn Coordinator; High Value Commercial Crop (HVCC) Coordinator; Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Product Standards (BAFPS) Regional Focal Person; GOAL 1 Regional Focal Person of the Medium-Term Philippine Development Plan (MTPDP) of the Department of Agriculture-Cordillera Administrative Region (DA-CARFU); Head of the Monitoring Unit of the Highland Agriculture Development Project (HADP) and Head of the Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Division of the Cordillera Highland Agricultural Resource Management Project (CHARMP), a foreign assisted projects of the Department of Agriculture in the Philippines. His experiences and expertise also include proposal development and project benefit monitoring and evaluation (PBME).
He authored and co-authored more than 100 scientific publications (Books, Monographs, peer-reviewed scientific Journals, Paper Presentations). In 2010, he is the corresponding author of a book entitled ‘Lifting the Level of Awareness on Pigeonpea: A Global Perspective’ which was launched by Dr MS Swaminathan, dubbed as India’s ‘Father of Green Revolution’. For manifesting his utmost professional competence and outstanding contribution on the field of Agriculture especially on Seed Systems, he is an Honorary Board Member (Technical/Editorial) of the Green Farming International Journal of Applied Agricultural and Horticultural Sciences since 2011.
To date, aside from the present designation, he is also the National Program Director for Special Area for Agricultural Development (SAAD) and Special Adviser for Research and Seed System of the Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI).
Director Vivencio R. Mamaril served as the second full-pledged BAFS Director. During his term, he led the transition of the Bureau’s Quality Management System to ISO 9001:2015 version of the standard and the subsequent maintenance of the certification.
Acknowledging the advantages information technology has to offer, Director Mamaril institutionalized the BAFS Online System not only to facilitate the Bureau’s internal processes but also to ease transaction with stakeholders. To this end, he led the development of the BAFS Online Commenting System (OCS) and the Online Registration System for organic agriculture products.
Director Mamaril led the development of the BAFS 2020-2025 Strategic Plan - a manifestation of what the management intends to do and achieve in the next six years as it embarks on a journey towards quality and performance excellence. It is crafted not only to serve as a guide for the organization but as well as to communicate clearly its goals and objectives within the given timeframe.
OIC-Director Karen S. Bautista witnessed the issuance of the QMS 9001:2008 certification during her term. She initiated the establishment of the DA Pool of Experts (DAPE) through the drafting of the Department Circular that will serve as its legal basis. She also finalized and initiated the submission of the proposed additional 65 plantilla positions to perform the additional mandates of the BAFS.
She initiated work pursuant to Department Order 4 series of 2017 on the Department Policy on rationalizing and Strengthening DA National and Regional Laboratory Services, which identified BAFS as the Lead Coordinator for efficient and strengthened DA Laboratory networks and provide proficiency testing services for the DA laboratories.
She likewise contributed to the ranking of BAFS as a “Better” performing agency in the Granting of 2016 Performance-Based Bonus (PBB).
OIC-Director Karen Kristine A. Roscom supervised the installation of the Bureau’s Quality Management System certifiable to ISO 9001:2008 standard.
Through her leadership, the manpower complement of the Organic Agriculture Division (OAD) was successfully filled up. OIC-Director Roscom ensured that the functions of the BAFS divisions were also streamlined and its regulatory function pertaining to organic agriculture successfully fulfilled. For this purpose, she led the passing for approval of five (5) Department Circulars. On the forefront of ensuring food safety at the farm level, particularly for crops, the BAFS during her term was able to grant 46 GAP certificates to qualified farmers - the highest number of certified farms since the institutionalization of the PhilGAP program.
She pulled off a very successful hosting of the APEC - Food Safety Cooperation Forum in Cebu City in 2015.
She also manifested active involvement during the crafting of the IRR of the Food safety Act (FSA), pushed for the approval of the ASEAN Standards on Organic Agriculture (ASOA) and the implementation of its succeeding projects, and hugely contributed to the ranking of BAFS as a “Better” performing agency in the grinding of 2016 Performance-based Bonus (PBB).
Director Leo P. Cañeda, as the next officer-in-charge, continued efforts for Quality Management System certifiable to ISO 900:2008 standards wherein the 1st Internal Quality Audit (IQA) team training was conducted for QMS 9001:2028 certification.
It was during his term that “Isang Dekada” ng National Organic Agriculture Convention (10th NOAC) at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) was successfully hosted by the Bureau. He also hosted the National Briefing on the United Nations Forum on Sustainability Standards (UNFSS) in coordination with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).
As the Bureau’s Officer-in-Charge from 2012-2013, Asec. Salvador S. Salacup proposed for the permanent plantilla positions of the Organic Agriculture Division (OAD) and initiated the creation of the Organic program roadmap. He also expanded BAFS personnel complement through hiring of Job Order staff. Supportive of the Bureau’s vision to be ISO 9001:2008 certified, ASec. Salacup initiated the various capacity-building activities of BAFS personnel on the Quality management System.
Director Gilberto F. Leyese served as the first full-fledged Director of BAFS.
He served for a decade and was instrumental in the approval of 17 plantilla positions of the Bureau, including the provision of a 3-storey BAFS building infrastructure as permanent office.
Director Layese was the champion of the Philippine Good Agricultural Practices (PhilGAP), Good Animal Husbandry Practices (GAHP) and Organic Agriculture Programs. A mover for the passing of the Organic Agriculture Law (RA 10068) and its implementing rules and regulations, Director Layese spearheaded the initiation of its plans and programs.
His influence also transcended to ASEAN region as he was the initiator of several ASEAN working groups and task forces. Expert Working Group on Good Agricultural Practices (EWG-GAP), Task Force on ASEAN Standards for Horticultural produce and Other Food crops (TF-MASHP) and Task Force on ASEAN Standard on Organic Agriculture (TF-ASOA) to name a few.
Director Layese also made sure that BAFS is visible internationally by convening numerous APEC-funded projects and hosting the 17th Session of the Codex Committee on the Food Import and export inspection and Certification Systems (CCFICS).
Dr. Maria Concepcion C. Lizada was the first OIC Director of BAFS.
She introduced BAFS' participation to the Codex Alimentarius Commission as Philippine Codex Contact Point. During her stint at BAFS, she served as the Philippine representative to the Codex Alimentarius Commission - Executive Committee as the representative for Asia.
She actively participated in the deliberations of Codex, paving the way for the Committees to consider and reflect the Philippine position in the Codex General Standard for Fats and Oils and Codex Standard for Desiccated Coconut Oil, among others.