Ceremonial turnover of crossbreds to LECOFADA marks partnership towards carabao-based enterprise development

Eighteen crossbred buffaloes were turned over to Leon Confed Farmers Cooperative (LECOFADA) thru a “paiwi” program of Philippine Carabao Center (PCC) on August 29 held at Auction Center, Leon, Iloilo City.

The “Ceremonial Turnover of 1st batch of crossbreds to LECOFADA”, as spearheaded by PCC at West Visayas State University (PCC at WVSU) signifies a great potential for the municipality of Leon to boost its carabao-based enterprises.

Around 100 crossbred buffaloes from Leon were gathered at the municipality’s Auction Center as a way of strengthening support towards progressive dairy industry.

During the event, PCC at WVSU center director Arn Granada provided a program briefing that allows the participants understand better the goals and mandate of PCC.

He also mentioned about the recent Communication for Development (ComDev) activation program (with a tagline “Karbawan”) in Leon as a pilot area in Iloilo City. Ensuing ComDev interventions include School-on-the Air (SOA), which has aired three sessions so far, a planned Farmer’s Livestock School (FLS) on Dairy Buffalo Production, and production (and distribution) of printed materials in the Ilonggo dialect to compliment further learning among farmers.

Dir. Granada encouraged them saying, “These learning platforms let you maximize learning and enhance your skills on dairy buffalo production based on your preferred communication interventions with the assistance of the PCC’s Knowledge Management Division.”

Meanwhile, Dr. Arnel N. del Barrio, PCC executive director, noted the event as a celebration of partnership saying, “This is not just a simple turnover of buffaloes, but this marks alliance with National Dairy Authority (NDA), Local Government Unit (LGU), Department of Agriculture Regional Field Office VI (DA-RFO VI), Department of Agriculture – Regional Agriculture and Fisheries Information Services VI (DA-RAFIS VI), Non-Government Organizations (NGOs), Non-Government Agencies (NGAs), Agricultural Training Institute Regional Field Office VI (ATI VI) and other stakeholders.”

He expressed gratitude to more than 100 carabao raisers gathered in the event that signify commitment along with other agencies that continuously support PCC at WVSU in implementing and disseminating its programs and services in reaching more dairy farmers.

Thus, he challenged Perlito Echeche, LECOFADA chairman, to contribute in PCC’s aim for higher milk production in the country in support of the RA 11037 – Healthy Food for Children Act, which includes Milk Supplementation Program.

The guests that joined and gave inspirational messages were NDA PDO III Arden Calesina, Consultant of DA-ASEC for Visayas and Regulations Ramona Gonzaga, 2nd district Political Affairs Officer III Ramie D. Corillo, representative from the Municipality of Davao City, Leon City Mayor Cahiling and Brgy. Captain Jalandoni.

They emphasized that this is an opportunity of the government to communicate with the farmers towards adoption of PCC-developed technologies and create a sustainable source of livelihood anchored on buffaloes.

The ceremonial turn over was also capped by a Php1.8 million buyback fund from NDA, Php 3.7 million for biologics and veterinary supplies from DA-RFO VI, and Php1 million for ComDev campaign, SOA, and FLS-DBP from RAFIS VI and ATI VI.

The event also saw the oath taking of elected AI technician officers and a response to the turnover of buffaloes from Mr. Echeche and PAFC chairman Isabelo Luscares.

They both expressed their commitment and eagerness to maximize the dispersed crossbreds for Carabao-based Enterprise Development (CBED). As Mr. Echeche encourages teamwork and unity among the members, Mr. Luscares reminded the cooperative-members about the constant proper feeding management. He emphasized the importance of secured forage grasses to be given to the crossbreds.

Throughout the event, the Karbawan jingle for Iloilo was played and heard in the venue, as its composer Virgilio Petchelier gave an intermission number, followed by a closing remarks from Dir. Granada.

4th Dairy Box outlet in Visayas, now open in Compostela, Cebu

Locals and tourists can now relish on a variety of buffalo dairy products offered at the newly launched “Dairy Box” at Brgy. Poblacion, Compostela, Cebu, last August 12.

Spearheading the event is the Compostela Market Vendors Multipurpose Cooperative (COMAVEMCO MPC) that had partnered with the Philippine Carabao Center (PCC) in acquiring management of Dairy Box.

Dairy Box is a local outlet that serves as a venue for PCC partnered cooperatives in showcasing their products. The outlet sells flavored milk, ice cream, pastries and pastillas from COMAVEMCO MPC members and other dairy buffalo cooperatives.

Apart from the adoption of PCC’s local business model, the agency also provided assistance to COMAVEMCO MPC in terms of knowledge in technical and processing goods.

“The shop provided value-added benefits to the milk sold by farmers and at the same time promotes Compostela’s local product Queseo” Ebonito Alivio, general manager of Dairy Box said.

Queseo or local white cheese is the One Town, One Product (OTOP) of Compostela where an annual Queseo festival was being held.

More than a hundred people have visited during the outlet opening led by the cooperative’s Board of Director Chairman Vilma Gulane. Amongst present from PCC were Dr. Caro Salces, Deputy Executive Director; Guillerma Abay-Abay, Carabao-based Enterprise Development Coordinator; and Dr. Glen Bajenting, Ubay Stock Farm Officer-in-Charge.

Also in attendance were representatives from the Department of Agriculture, Cooperative Development Authority, Department of Trade and Industry, Lamac Multi-Purpose Cooperative (LMPC), Aboitiz Land Inc., and local government officials led by Mayor Joel Quiño.

Coinciding with the opening of Dairy Box is the blessing of the new three-story building of COMAVEMCO MPC. The cooperative includes farmers, fishermen and market vendors.

The three other Dairy Box outlets are situated in Carmen, Bohol; Parian, Cebu City; and Island City Mall, Tagbilaran City. The managing cooperatives are the Tamboan Farmers Multipurpose Cooperative, LMPC and Bohol Dairy Cooperative.

PCC researchers ‘sharpen saw’ for research proposal writing

“Rich fieldwork experiences can be meaningful sources of ideas for research. One just needs to process these first-hand data into a plausible project proposal,” said PCC Executive Director Dr. Arnel del Barrio during the Training Workshop on Writing Proposals for Funding Application held last August 6-10 at the PCC National Headquarters and Gene Pool in Muñoz Nueva Ecija.

More than 15 PCC point persons and researchers from the PCC national headquarters and regional centers participated in a series of lectures, mock writing and editing exercises, mentor-mentee consultations and discussions.

According to Dr. Caro Salces, PCC Deputy Executive Director, the said activity is a way to help the participants align their future research projects to the PCC agenda and market their research ideas for funding and support.

Participants of the said training were expected to understand operational research thrust, write a project proposal, edit manuscript for brevity and coherence, search for and manage references.

To gauge learning, seven project proposals relating to the program proposal on the “Development of Carabao Improvement Service Protocol to Enhance Reproductive Efficiencies” were presented by the group.  This particular research program aims to address the need to increase carabao population.

The PCC Operations and the Research and Development Division (RDD) groups, headed respectively by Dr. Salces and Dr. Annabelle Sarabia, organized the said training workshop.

The resource persons were seasoned PCC researchers namely Dr. Claro Mingala, Dr. Danilda Hufana-Duran, Dr. Eufrocina P. Atabay,   Dr. Peregrino G. Duran, Dr. Ester B. Flores, and  Dr. Eric P. Palacpac.

PCC launched SOA on Dairy Buffalo Production as an intervention of KARBAWAN campaign

Harmonized with an on-going intervention led by the PCC’s Knowledge Management Division entitled “Strengthening Carabao Development Program (CDP) Communication for Development (ComDev) Campaign in Visayas and Mindanao”, a learning platform called School-on-the-Air on Dairy Buffalo Production was launched on August 4 to further enhance the knowledge and skills of carabao keepers in Iloilo.

It is a pilot activity of PCC hosted by its regional center based in Western Visayas State University (PCC at WVSU), supervised by the Center Director Arn D. Granada.

Together with Mr. Granada, Dr. Eric P. Palacpac, the project leader of the ComDev campaign and chief of KMD, serves as guest speakers during the launching of the SOA.

The said intervention will be aired for four months (August – November) every Saturdays over DYFM Bombo Radyo Iloilo. Around 500 farmer-enrollees will be catered by the SOA program from six municipalities of Iloilo namely Calinog, Lambunao, Bingawan, Badiangan, Janiuay, Dueñas, Leon and then, Sapian in Capiz.

The SOA module covers different lessons under Feeding Management, Health Management, Breeding Management, Carabao Enterprise, and Technology adoption.

During this program, the enrollees will be given quizzes to assess their learnings for a couple of lessons to be discussed. The SOA coordinators from each respective municipality, identified by PCC at WVSU, will facilitate the pre-test, quizzes among farmer-enrollees during SOA program, and a post-test evaluation afterwards.  

Meanwhile, selected 30 farmers representing four municipalities of Iloilo will be concurrently enrolled in a Farmers Livestock School on Dairy Buffalo Production (FLS-DBP), according to Dr. Myrtle Alcazar of PCC at WVSU.

“FLS-DBP is a 34-week on-site training course with practicals or hands on to fully introduce PCC’s developed technologies and hone the skills of farmers”, she said.

On the other hand, the ‘blended’ strategies of integrating FLS approach in the SOA program is intended to create an interactive learning among farmers. Thus, this SOA program will also adopt the innovation of engaging some farmer-leaders as resource persons in some of lessons to facilitate learnings.

Strategies and methodologies are adopted from the imparted practices of ATI VI with the help of Ms. Nicolasita G. Gallego, Information Officer III/Chief, Information Services Section.

The Agricultural Technology Institute Region VI (ATI-RVI) and Department of Agriculture Regional Agriculture and Fisheries Information Division (DA-RAFID VI) joined force in the implementation of the program and extended support on the funding of the air time, training materials and other logistics of the SOA.

As the PCC expands its communication campaign, a series of interventions are also expected to be soon developed in other regional centers of PCC in Mindanao. This is to further reach buffalo raisers or carabao keepers and continuously disseminate programs, services, and technologies in these parts of the country.