About four decades ago, hand tractors and carabao drawn implements followed by farm workers were the scenes in the agricultural landscapes of rice and corn production, and farm laborers planting and toiling under the sun. One can only imagine how hard it is to produce staples that feed our people. This had been depicted in a song “planting rice is never fun”.
In recognition of the plight of the backbone of our economy, the UPLB Institute of Agricultural Engineering Technology (INSAET) established the Agricultural Mechanization Development program to participate in the Regional Network for Agricultural Machinery in 1979, a project of the United Nations-Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN-ESCAP). AMDPs primary goal then as it is today is to improve the farming activity through the generation and application of appropriate mechanization technologies for the intended users. Years later in the 1990s, did its share by formulating a comprehensive agricultural mechanization development plan, significant portion of it was adapted by the Department of Agriculture.
For the next several decades, AMDP continued its function in generating and promoting agricultural mechanization technologies with the goal of improving productivity and uplifting socio-economic situation of the farmers. AMDP’s significant contribution in agricultural mechanization RDE and policy formulation was recognized by the stakeholders in the agricultural mechanization sector making it a key player in the Agricultural and Fisheries Mechanization (AFMech) Law of 2013 or (R.A. 10601). The law primarily tasked UPLB-AMDP to participate in the Agricultural and Fisheries Research, Development and Extension Network and to lead and coordinate the agricultural and fishery mechanization RDE program of all academic institutions in the country.
AMDP was elevated into the Center for Agri-fisheries and Biosystems Mechanization on October 29, 2015 during 1312th UP Board of Regent Meeting, in response to its significant accomplishments in agricultural and biosystems mechanization research, development and extension/public service and its major role to the AFMech Law of 2013.
Moving forward, BIOMECH continues its commitment to contribute to the modernization of the Philippine Agriculture in line with the national development programs through smart innovations and towards Agriculture 4.0.