Coop BOD members, general managers undergo strategic planning training

The board of directors (BOD) and the general managers are the driving force behind every cooperative. They establish the strategic direction of the coop and craft plans that will take them toward that direction. Thus, it is important that they are knowledgeable and properly skilled in formulating effective and efficient strategic plans.


Within this framework, 51 members of BOD and general managers of 21 dairy cooperatives in Nueva Ecija completed a strategic planning workshop held November 19-21 at the Philippine Carabao Center (PCC) National Headquarters and Gene Pool in the Science City of Muñoz, Nueva Ecija.


The training course is one of 14 modules under the Standard Training Curricula developed by the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA) for cooperative officers who need to be equipped with competencies necessary in discharging their respective responsibilities.


Trainers from the CDA-accredited training center at the Central Luzon State University (CLSU) conducted the three-day course.


Engr. Adorable Pineda, head of the presidential staff at CLSU, urged the participants to be systems thinkers who look at their respective cooperative as a system wherein each member is an interrelated component.


That system works within the context of larger systems, and better performance is achieved with the strengthening and balancing of the processes within the system, he pointed out.


In this context, participants reviewed and analyzed their respective cooperatives to determine if these are responsive to their mission, vision and goals. They evaluated the different indicators on the organizational, social and economic aspects of their coops’ operation. They also looked at current trends and issues relevant to their cooperatives in the national and global context.


From this take-off point, Dr. Pastora S. Coloma, CLSU director for extension, guided the participants through the different processes involved in crafting a strategic plan for their respective cooperatives.


“A strategic plan is an organization’s game plan or business plan to reach its goals,” Dr. Coloma explained. “It usually covers a period of 3-5 years and takes careful planning. It should also be duly approved by the members of the cooperative,” she added.


According to Coloma, strategic planning involves identifying the issues that need to be addressed with respect to the vision, mission and goals set by the coop.


She added that analyzing and evaluating internal and external factors affecting the coops, classifying them as strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, or threats, will help determine the proper course of action in crafting a sound strategy for each coop.


As a final output for the training, the participants were then grouped according to their respective cooperatives and formulated sample of strategic plans, which they presented during the last day of the training.


“The cooperatives are encouraged to continuously develop their coop by formulating relevant strategic plans. We are requesting them to develop their strategic plans for the next five years and to furnish us a copy of such plans,” Wilma Del Rosario, Agriculturist II at PCC who currently works closely with the cooperatives, said.


Nueva Ecija celebrates 7th “Gatas ng Kalabaw Festival”

The province of Nueva Ecija continues to pursue its bid to become the “Dairy Capital of the Philippines” as it observed the 7th edition of the annual “Gatas ng Kalabaw (Carabao’s Milk) Festival”, this time graciously hosted by the town of Gen. Natividad.


The festival, which was held November 15, at the town’s gymnasium, aims to promote the dairy buffalo’s milk not only for economic benefits but also for the promotion of health and nutrition among small-hold dairy farmers and their families as well as the consumers.


Highlight of this year’s celebration was the symbolic “tagay pugay (toast of salutation)”, a simultaneous milk toasting and drinking featuring school children and representatives from partner private institutions and government agencies. It emphasized the significance of multi-sectoral efforts in promoting and uplifting the local dairy industry in Nueva Ecija, which is the National Impact Zone (NIZ) of the Carabao Development Program (CDP) of the Philippine Carabao Center (PCC).


Speaking during the opening program, PCC chief of operations Dr. Annabelle Sarabia affirmed PCC’s continuous support to the local dairy farmers. She also thanked the local government units (LGUs) of Nueva Ecija and other agencies that are supporting PCC in its endeavor to develop and strengthen the local dairy industry for the benefit of the rural dairy farmers. 


During the program, the Nueva Ecija provincial office of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) awarded milking equipment and village-based milk collection centers to clustered dairy cooperatives in the towns of Guimba, Sto. Domingo, Llanera, and General Natividad during a ceremonial turn-over as part of DTI’s “Shared Service Facilities” program.


As a complementary feature of the festival, DTI provincial director Brigida Pili also launched the agency’s Diskwento Caravan”. The caravans offer discounted Nueva Ecija-made products that include, among others, food items, spices and hand-made baskets. The caravan aims to assist local entrepreneurs in promoting their products not only in the province but in other parts of Central Luzon as well.


Spearheaded by DTI in partnership with the Gen. Natividad LGU, the festival was participated in by officials from public agencies, LGUs, and dairy cooperatives from Gen. Natividad, Llanera, San Jose City, Science City of Munoz, and Talavera town. The municipality of Gen. Natividad has four PCC-assisted dairy cooperatives.


Gen. Natividad Mayor Areli Grace Santos, meanwhile, has accepted the request that her town serve again as host for the next festival, which will coincide with the foundation anniversary of her town in July, 2014. 


Dairy coop officers undergo training on conflict management

Thirty-five officers from different dairy cooperatives in Nueva Ecija have completed a two-day training course on conflict management at the National Headquarters and Gene Pool of the Philippine Carabao Center (PCC) in the Science City of Muñoz.


Held November 13-14, the training was conducted in conformity with the mandate from the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA) for cooperative officers to undergo training that will enhance their competencies in performing their task and responsibilities.


According to the CDA, the training course on conflict management is one of 14 modules developed by the agency in partnership with the Coop Education Forum (CEF) as part of the Standard Training Curricula for Cooperative Officers in the country.


The curricula include the Basic Cooperative Course, Cooperative Management and Governance, Financial Management, Conflict Management, Parliamentary Procedure, Leadership and Values Re-orientation, Strategic Planning, Audit Management, Records Management, Entrepreneurial and Business Management, Basic Accounting for Non-Accountants, Internal Control, Rules Formulation, and the Cooperative Standards.


The CDA prescribes that this type of training must be facilitated only by its accredited training providers in various regions of the country.


For Region III (Central Luzon), the accredited CDA training provider is the training office at the Central Luzon State University (CLSU).


CLSU training director Teodora T. Battad gave lectures, initiated discussions and conducted workshops for the participants to become fully aware and knowledgeable about their duties and responsibilities as presented and discussed in the curricular contents.


PCC deputy executive director Dr. Felomino Mamuad, project development officer Mario Delizo and project evaluation officer Erickson Dela Cruz were on hand to perform their assigned roles in the conduct of the training.


One of the participants, Melchor Correa, chair of the Eastern Primary Multi-Purpose Cooperative (EPMPC) in San Jose City, said the training was very helpful as they acquired the appropriate knowledge on how to handle conflicts that crop up at times among members in their respective cooperatives.


Prospective dairy buffalo farmer-trustees undergo social preparation training

Farmer-members of seven Nueva Ecija-based cooperatives have successfully completed a social preparation training held November 11-12 at the PCC National Headquarters and Gene Pool in the Science City of Muñoz.


The training is one of the major requirements for farmers to qualify as trustees under the 25-dairy cow module project of the Philippine Carabao Center (PCC), an attached agency of the Department of Agriculture (DA).


Conducted by the PCC’s Dairy Herd Improvement and Enterprise Development Program (DHI-EDP) team, the training is intended to enhance the level of understanding and awareness of the farmer-trustees in relation to the steps and processes of applying for the PCC’s dairy module.


Those who completed the training comprised 43 farmer-members of various cooperatives in Nueva Ecija, which is the PCC’s National Impact Zone for carabao dairying. Of the trainees, 21 were from the Eastern Primary Multi-Purpose Cooperative (EPMPC), nine from Bagong Pag-asa sa Bagong Talavera (BPPT), two from Licaong Dairy Producer Cooperative (LDPC), three from Agpapa Irrigators Credit Cooperative (AICC), six were from Nag-iisang Masikap (NMMPC), and one each from Bubalus Bubalis Dairy Farmers Association (BBDFA) and New Mabuhay Multi-Purpose Cooperative (NMMPC).


Based on the selection process of the DHI-EDP, the farmer-trustees qualified for the requirements or criteria for eligibility. Each of them, including their respective cooperatives, passed through the different stages of project implementation, such as orientation, background investigation and ocular inspection, social preparation training, technical training on basic buffalo management, final evaluation and field validation.


The trainees were given insights on the PCC’s Carabao Development Program, awareness on the factors affecting the performance of dairy enterprise and the importance of knowing one’s self, community, cooperative and the Filipino values in relation to project implementation.


“The trainees were made aware of the social and technical aspects of the dairy module project. They were also apprised of inadequacies observed in transferring animals to other farmer-trustees,” Marilou Santos, project development officer of PCC, said.


She also noted that some farmer-trustees, instead of surrendering the animals to the agency, were transferring the animals to other farmers who did not undergo proper training and thus were non-compliant with the requirements of the project.


“The training corrected this practice as prospective farmer-trustee must first undergo the required training,” she stressed.


Santos, organizer of the training, added that social preparation is one of the basic trainings that a farmer-trustee and his cooperative must undergo to be able to meet the selection criteria of the dairy module.


She also said that there are a number of buffaloes available for entrustment to the participants as long as they meet all the requirements for the project.


“Itong training na ito ay inasahan naming makatutulong sa ating mga magsasaka-katiwala para malaman at maging pamilyar sa mga dapat at hindi dapat gawin sa proyektong gatasang kalabaw ng PCC. Sa training na ito, nalaman din namin ang iba’t-ibang kapakinabangang kayang ibigay ng kalabaw (This training was expected to help the prospective farmer-trustee to know and be familiar with the do’s and don’ts in the dairy module project of PCC. It also makes us become aware of the advantages that a dairy buffalo can provide to us),” Zoren Moralla, one of the participants from Nag-iisang Masikap MPC, said.


The two-day training involved lectures, discussions, workshop, experiential learning, brainstorming and group dynamics.





PCC info head wins PCAARRD’s Professional Media Award

Rowena Galang Bumanlag, head of the Philippine Carabao Center’s Applied Communication Section, recently placed first in the “2013 PCAARRD’s Professional Media Award (Print Category).



The competition is part of the yearly search conducted by the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCAARRD), an attached agency of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST).



The winners were honored during an awarding ceremony held November 8 at Sofitel Hotel, Pasay City.



Bumanlag received a trophy and cash prize from Dr. Patricio Faylon, PCAARRD executive director, and Danilo Cardenas, deputy executive director.



The Professional Media Award is given by PCAARRD as a “salute to the hardworking media practitioners who excelled and created significant impact in science and technology (S&T) promotion, commercialization, and adoption”. It is subdivided into two categories: print and broadcast. Under the print category, awards are given for articles published in national, regional, and local dailies as well as magazine and professional newsletters. Broadcast awards are given for programs aired over the radio.



Bumanlag was adjudged winner based on her significant contributions as a media practitioner in technology diffusion, including her ability as a writer to explore creative possibilities of presenting a single commodity in easy-to-read articles that arouse readers’ interest.



She developed her expertise as an agricultural writer in work experiences in different government agencies in the Science City of Muñoz, Nueva Ecija. She joined the PCC in 2009.



She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Development Communication from the Central Luzon State University in 2003 and is currently pursuing her masters degree in communication at the Ateneo de Manila University.



Winners in four other categories, namely, best R&D paper, “Pantas” (for outstanding scientists/researchers and research administrators), “Tanglaw” (for outstanding research institutions), and “Ugnay” (for the best R&D Consortium and Elvira Tan Memorial Award for Outstanding Fisheries Publication) were also cited during the awarding ceremony.



This year’s search revolved around the theme: “PCAARRD: Kaagapay sa Pag-unlad ng Industriya ng Sakahan at Pangisdaan.”