The Central Experiment Station (CES) has a long history of existence. It was established through Act 2730 of the Philippine Legislature on February 15, 1918. It was originally named Agricultural Experiment Station under the direct supervision of the UP College of Agriculture. Through the years, its service was recognized as a support unit in the conduct of field researches and experiments by the UPCA researchers. Farm machineries and implements were acquired through grants from funding agencies both national and foreign sources.
The UPCA had grown into a full-pledged university in November, 1972. A year after, the supervision of the then FOD was transferred to the Office of the Dean, UPLB-CA. In 1974, the University expanded its experimental farm areas including the establishment of the Institute of Plant Breeding (IPB). An Ad Hoc Land Development Office was created to oversee the initial land development of the new project. This was consequently integrated with Farm Operations Division (FOD) forming a unified office, now the CES.
A unit equipped with upgraded facilities abreast with the current technologies capable of providing appropriate support services for research, instruction, training and extension activities, and a source of pertinent information with regards to relevant researches or projects performed in the station.
The Central Experiment Station (CES) is committed to provide appropriate services through the use of available facilities in the station to UPLB researchers, faculty members and students and those connected with UPLB-hosted/affiliate institutions in conducting field re-searches, instruction, training and extension activities; and assist in seed/food production projects in support of the food security program of the university.
CES was established as an academic support unit of the College of Agriculture to provide mechanized farm operation services for field researches being conducted in its experimental farms. It is now a centralized support service unit of the whole UPLB complex rendering services within the resources of the station. As a service unit of the College of Agriculture for research, instruction and extension the functions of the CES are as follows:
- To provide mechanized farming operations for agriculture field researchers;
- To supply irrigation water requirements in the field experiments;
- To provide general maintenance of the experimental areas/farm of CES;
- To conduct proper distribution or allocation of experimental areas for researchers (permanent or on a seasonal basis);
- To supervise the operation and maintenance of farm tractors and implements, deep-well and portable irrigation pumps, water reservoirs and irrigation equipment;
- To gather pertinent data and information related to the use and management of experimental lots;
- Responsible for the judicious utilization of the experimental farm by putting into production vacant areas not utilized for research for seed and food production in support to the food security program of the present government.
- 1909-1914. The UPCA farms in the form of home gardens were found mostly between residential houses of faculty members of the College. Farms were small and had no cropping patterns. Mr. Mariano Manas Cruz served as the first Farm Superintendent from 1910-1911 and then succeeded by Professor Harold Cuzner from 1912-1914.
- 1914-1922. The Station was recognized as a support unit in the conduct of field researches and experiments of UPCA. Initial developments included planting of pili trees along the road leading to the present site.
- Professor Albert G. Glodt served as Farm Superintendent from 1914-1919 and then succeeded by Professor Inocencio Elayda from 1920-1922.
- Dean Charles Fuller Baker initiated a campaign to establish a central experiment station for the College of Agriculture. He enlisted the support of professors, alumni, students and friends outside the College.
- Successful lobbying of Dean Baker resulted in greater allocation for the Department of Agronomy and the passage of Act No. 2730 by the Philippine Legislature on February 15, 1918 which provided for the establishment of the Agricultural Experiment Station at the College of Agriculture. An area of 379 Ha was acquired through this legislation. The Act which was sponsored by the late Guillermo P. Pablo likewise appropriated P125,000 on February 15,1918 which enabled the College to accomplish the following:
- Expropriation of more than 250 hectares of suitable agricultural land adjoining the college grounds for the Agronomy experimental fields (139.3 Ha) and the Animal Husbandry pasture lands .
- Construction of two laboratory buildings, poultry houses, barn, a hog shelter and silos
- Purchase of experimental animals including special types of carabaos
- 1922-1927. UPCA Dean Charles F. Baker in 1926 pointed out the importance of research in order to develop the courses to be given here and to furnish results for extension education. He wrote “The strength of any country may be justly measured by its attitude toward scientific investigation and toward the technical education which is built upon it”.
- Dean Baker employed Professor M. B. Raymundo who served as Farm Superintendent from 1922-1928. He started the building of roads, irrigation dams, drainage and ditches through the Bayanihan system. A course in Farm Management was offered under the Department of Agronomy.
- 1928-1938. Professor Alejandro B. Catambay was appointed as head of Farm Management Division under the Department of Agronomy until 1938. When he was transferred to the Department of Agricultural Engineering, Mr. Clemente Yangco succeeded him and served as Farm Superintendent from 1938-1946.
- 1941-1945. World War II broke out and a great portion of the farm was used as camp site of the Japanese Imperial Army. Portions unoccupied were tilled by faculty members and students. A portion was kept as coral for work animals.
- 1946-1956. Professor Alejandro B. Catambay was reinstated as Farm Superintendent and concurrent head of the Department of Agricultural Engineering. Acquisition of machinery was started through aid from various agencies and sources.
- June 1952-June 20, 1960. The Cornell-Los Baños Contract under the auspices of the Foreign Operations Administration (FOA) later named International Cooperation Administration (ICA) which aimed to assist in the post-war rehabilitation of the College of Agriculture, UP, the development of the College Central Experiment Station.
- 1956-1963. A division of Farm Management was established to house all facilities of the Central Experiment Station. The division handled all the field operations in the experiment station. Professor Sesinando R. Reantazo was hired as full time Farm Superintendent and served his term from 1956-1963.
- 1963 – The name of the division evolved from Farm Management to Research Farm Operation Division to Farm Operation Division. Professor Rosendo K. Palis was appointed Farm Superintendent after Prof. Reantazo retired in 1964.
The need to coordinate the activities of the experimental field and the use of farm machinery and implements of the College became the basic consideration for putting the FOD directly responsible to the UPCA Director of Research.
Succeeding years witnessed the active role of the CES in support of the College of Agriculture in carrying out its instructional and research mandate as well as national food production programs in which the College has significant involvement. CES is a vital support system to intensify research in plant breeding and crop protection following the establishment of the Institute of Plant Breeding in 1975 and the National Crop Protection Center in 1976.
Starting in 1980, the position of Farm Superintendent was replaced with Station Manager. He is directly responsible to the UPCA Dean.
Appointed Station Managers of the Central Experiment Station are:
o Mr. Telesforo M. Laude, 1980-1986
o Mr. Benjamin G.Pangga, 1986-1993
o Mr. Rodolfo M. Payson, 1997-1999
o Dr. Eliseo P. Cadapan, 1999
o Dr. Enrico P. Supangco, 1999-2002
o Mr. Ernesto B. Cayaban, Jr., 2003-2007
o Dr. Cesar C. Sevilla, 2007-2011
o Dr. Virgilio T. Villancio 2011-April 2013
o Dr. Jose Nestor M. Garcia, May 2013-June 30, 2015
o Dr. Mafeo B. Bejo, July 1, 2015 – October 31, 2018
o Engineer Emmanuel Q. Amatorio, November 1, 2018 – Present
Through the years, its services recognized CES as a support unit in the conduct of field researches and experiments by the UPLB-CA Researchers. Farm machinery and implements were acquired through grants from National & foreign funding agencies
Significant changes that took place:
- 1961 to 1965 – the research Farm Operation Division (FOD) was under the Department of Agronomy
- 1966- the unit was renamed as Farm Operation Division under the supervision of the UP-CA Director
- November 1972- A year after the UP College of Agriculture has grown into a full pledge university in, the supervision of FOD was transferred to the Office of the Dean of CA.
- In 1974, the university expanded its experimental farm areas including the establishment of the Institute of Plant Breeding (IPB). An Ad Hoc Land Development Office was created to oversee the initial land development of the new project. This was consequently integrated with FOD farming office, now the Central Experiment Station (CES).
Central Experiment Station
College of Agriculture and Food Science
University of the Philippines Los Baños
College, Los Baños, Laguna