Bohol’s dairy stakeholders strengthen collab for ART-ICDP

“The nutrition of a child in the first 1,000 days is very critical to mental development,” Bohol Governor Arthur C. Yap said in his first meeting with dairy stakeholders providing direction to the dairy industry of the province.

This signals the conception of a comprehensive, multi-agency, and multi-sectoral dairy development project in Bohol called Agricultural Rural Transformation through Integrated Community Development Project (ART-ICDP).

This comprehensive proposal, formulated by the Provincial Government of Bohol through the Office of the Provincial Veterinarian (OPV), the Department of Agriculture-Philippine Carabao Center  at Ubay Stock Farm (DA-PCC at USF) and DA-National Dairy Authority, and the Bohol Dairy Cooperative (BODACO), mainstreams dairy farming as a major source of income in Bohol.

Dr. Stella Marie Lapiz, Bohol provincial veterinarian, said the PLGU had already allocated funding for this undertaking.


“Nakita man jud ang dakong potential sa dairy dinhi sa province maong ato gyud gipanghingusgan nga ma implement gud ni siya pinaagi sa atong pagtinabangay (We have seen the great potential of dairying here in our province, that’s why we will strengthen its implementation thru strong collaboration with each other),” Lapiz said.


In the project proposal, ART-ICDP aims to achieve three major objectives: increase the income of the participating farm families by at least Php30,000.00 annually, enroll at least 1,000 dairy animals yearly, and provide 100% of the milk supply required for the National Feeding Program (RA 11037) in the province of Bohol.


To fulfill these, the province needs to produce at least 1,250 li of raw milk a day or 150,000 li in 120 days to meet the requirement of 25,000 children-recipients of the feeding program. Ready-to-drink (RTD) milk in packs of 200 ml 25% toned milk will be distributed to the children for this purpose.


With a 21-liter per capita milk requirement, Bohol needs at least 7,583 milking animals producing 3 li a day to meet the demand for RTD alone. Currently, its raw milk supply is produced from the existing 1,726 dairy carabao herd and 233 dairy cattle herd.



The implementation


“This project was launched last December 2019 during the celebration of the 5th Bohol Dairy Festival. Implementation, however, was only started this year and will end by 2022,” Lapiz said.


With series of consultations, this will be carried out in three phases. Phase 1 covers social mobilization—DA-PCC at USF, OPV, and NDA will identify and select project areas; conduct project advocacy, marketing and orientation; and form dairy clusters. Phase 2 will be about trainings, organizational development and stakeholders’ capacitation; expansion of dairy herd; and establishment of communal facilities. Lastly, Phase 3 deals with scaling-up of raw milk production and dairy product development to include establishment of related enterprises on silage production, feedmill, vermicomposting, and processing and marketing; and enhancement of private partnership and product development.


“We are eyeing 18 municipalities in this project. They are selected because of the presence of potential dairy animals, both carabao and cattle, in their town and some of these are within the existing dairy zones,” Lapiz explained.


“Another consideration in the selection of project areas is their proximity to a processing plant,” she added.


According to Lapiz, the process flow basically starts in marketing the project to the municipal mayors of the identified project areas. Then, veterinary clinic and estrus synchronization (ES) and artificial insemination (AI) will be conducted onsite by OPV, DA-PCC at USF and NDA wherein pre-enrolment and selection of animals will be conducted.


Once the animals get pregnant, the team will schedule dairy enterprise orientation seminars and trainings for the owners or caretakers. From here onward, the standard groundworks for dairy enterprise development will ensue.


The updates



Early this year, the team had already conducted activities under Phase 1. As of date, 1,014 animals were pre-enrolled (628 Carabao and 386 Cattle) in the program from the initial three municipalities. Meanwhile, 50 animals are expected to queue in the milking line in San Miguel, 161 in Mabini, and 39 in Talibon.


In response to COVID-19 pandemic, the Provincial Government of Bohol launched its ‘’WE SURVIVE BOHOL AS ONE’’ program. One of its sub-projects is a community milk-feeding program in 17 municipalities with the highest number of malnourished children. The PLGU allocated Php10 million for this purpose.


To date, around Php6.1 million was utilized for the 60-day milk feeding program benefitting 5,130 children. The objective of this project is to boost the immunity of members of the vulnerable sectors and at the same time help the dairy farmer market their produce even in the face of crisis.


The implementation of this project was facilitated by the Provincial Nutrition Council, Education Center, OPV and DA-PCC at USF in collaboration with the Municipal Nutrition Council in the targeted municipalities. Milk is supplied by the BODACO.


“BODACO, which consolidates the milk produced by the farmers and leads the establishment of the dairy enterprise, is also essential in the implementation of the ART-ICDF project because they (the farmers) are the main reason why these efforts are made,” according to Dr. Gundolino P. Bajenting, OIC-Center Director of DA-PCC at USF.


Meanwhile, the PLGU awarded one  tractor to BODACO in June 2020 to facilitate the forage production of farmers. The DA-PCC at USF also gave an initial two sets of water system paraphernalia to two dairy farmer clusters in Mabini, 10 sacks of dairy concentrates and one 20-kg mineral blocks as part of its refocused activities to mitigate the effect of the pandemic.

SMF donates bags of flour to CAMPC for MilkyBun prod’n

The Catalanacan Multi-Purpose Cooperative (CAMPC), one of the assisted dairy cooperatives of the Department of Agriculture-Philippine Carabao Center (DA-PCC), received 72 bags (25 kg each) of free flour from the San Miguel Foundation (SMF) for the production of MilkyBun. 


The free bags of flour donated by SMF, through its Program Assistant Clara Cabrera, is in response to DA-PCC’s initiative of collaborating with the private sectors to make food available and affordable while ensuring continuous livelihood opportunities for carapreneurs in communities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. 


Said initiative will ensure reduced cost for the MilkyBun production, which will lead to higher income for dairy farmers. 


This is not the first collaboration of DA-PCC with SMF. Last May, the latter bought fresh carabao’s milk from farmer-cooperatives struggling to cope with the pandemic, which was then donated to poor communities and food banks in and around Metro Manila and neighboring provinces. 


“This turnover ceremony is just the tip of the iceberg,” said DA-PCC Executive Director Dr. Arnel Del Barrio as DA-PCC is set to formally launch the MilkyBun Production Center by September. 


Said project is in line with the “Bayanihan to Heal as One Act” (RA 11469) and the DA’s “Ahon Lahat, Pagkaing Sapat (ALPAS) Kontra sa COVID-19”.



The DA-PCC through its Research and Development Division (RDD) developed the MilkyBun, a nutrient-rich bread made with fresh carabao’s milk, to help boost the immune system of the vulnerable sector especially children because the amount of protein and carbohydrates in one glass of milk is equivalent to one MilkyBun. 


Meanwhile, 72 bags of flour were also given to Bohol Dairy Cooperative for the same purpose. 


Also present during the ceremony were Provincial Agrarian Reform Program Officer Joyce Ramones, Chief Agrarian Reform Program Officer Borromeo Pascual, DA-PCC Deputy Executive Director Dr. Caro Salces, RDD Officer-in-Charge Dr. Eufrocina Atabay, Project Evaluation Officer Dr. Ericson dela Cruz, and RDD-CEDS Head Mina Abella, CAMPC Chairman Ferdinand Cueva and General Manager Leoncio Callo. Select staff members of DA-PCC, Department of Agrarian Reform, and CAMPC also graced the program.

Billionaire co-op in Mindanao inks partnership with DA-PCC for ALAB Karbawan project

The Department of Agriculture-Philippine Carabao Center at Central Mindanao University (DA-PCC at CMU) formally signs agreement with Oro Integrated Cooperative (OIC) in Cagayan de Oro City as the agency’s conduit cooperative for the ALAB Karbawan Project.

DA-PCC at CMU Center Director Dr. Lowell Paraguas, Chairperson of the OIC Board of Directors (BOD) Doris Calapiz and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of OIC Floriano Hilot signed a Memorandum of Understanding on July 31, 2020.

ALAB Karbawan stands for Accelerating Livelihood and Assets Buildup while “Karbawan” is a Visayas and Mindanao term meaning buffalo production and management.

The project aims to establish a robust Carabao-based Business Improvement Network (CBIN) in 16 provinces for 2019 and 11 for 2020 in the Philippines through the sponsorship of Senate Committee on Agriculture and Food Chairperson Senator Cynthia Villar. A budget of Php10 million is allocated for each of the provinces.

Under the DA-PCC at CMU’s ALAB Karbawan, one project site was identified in Misamis Oriental for 2019 with Governor Yevgeny Vincente Emano as the focal person and two in Bukidnon for 2020 with 1st District Representative Maria Lourdes Acosta-Alba and 4th District Representative Rogelio Neil Roque as the focal persons.

According to Dr. Paraguas, the DA-PCC at CMU will lead the conduct of learning events for farmers and carapreneurs that are set to make them more competitive in dairying and thus will generally improve the state of the local dairy industry in the region.

“Hopefully, through meaningful collaborations and strong partnerships, this project will pan out,” Dr. Paraguas said.

Dr. Paraguas emphasized the agency and co-op will closely cooperate with local government units and other partners to ensure that the assets will be used to improve the livelihood of value chain players through herd build up, milk collection, processing and marketing of locally-produced milk products.

“It’s a blessing for us to engage in this project with the DA-PCC. We are looking forward to opportunities that will benefit our farmers such as this project, which is very much aligned with the mission of changing the lives of our members and communities,” Hilot said.

Meanwhile, Calapiz anticipates a significant increase in the income of their members and that soon nutritious, fresh and affordable carabao-based dairy products will be available to more consumers.

Also present during the signing were the OIC’s branch managers and key staff of DA-PCC at CMU.

DA-PCC, DepEd prep for tie-up program on school-based milk feeding

A total of 394,433 undernourished children are expected to benefit from the implementation of a nationwide School-Based Feeding Program (SBFP) pursuant to Republic Act No. 11037 also known as the “Masustansyang Pagkain para sa Batang Pilipino Act”. 

Said undertaking is a joint effort of the Department of Education (DepEd) and the Department of Agriculture-Philippine Carabao Center (DA-PCC) in line with the law institutionalizing a national feeding program for undernourished children in public schools. 

In June 2018, President Rodrigo Duterte signed RA No. 11037 to address the problem of undernutrition among Filipino children through a National Feeding Program of which one of the components is the Milk Feeding Program with fresh milk or fresh milk-based product as additional component to cycle-menu hot meals in the SBFP. 

“This program is not only beneficial to undernourished children but also to dairy value chain players as it has created a higher demand for locally produced milk, thus, providing them sustainable livelihood and boosting the local dairy industry,” DA-PCC Executive Director Dr. Arnel Del Barrio said. 

The DepEd and DA-PCC signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) to embark on and implement a Milk Feeding Program in accordance with the mandates and objectives of RA No. 11037. 

Several operating MOAs (OMOA) between the DA-PCC and Schools Division Offices (SDO) of DepEd were initially signed to launch the program. These include DA-PCC’s OMOAs with the SDOs of Puerto Princesa City, General Trias City, Oriental Mindoro, Cavite, Quezon Province, Laguna Province, Batangas Province, Legazpi City, Antipolo City, and Nueva Ecija, respectively. 

In addition, a total of nine DA-PCC regional centers had inked OMOAs with SDOs in their respective areas. 

The DepEd through its Bureau of Learner Support Services-School Health Division (BLSS-SHD) will lead the implementation of the SBFP-Milk Feeding Program component in coordination with DA-PCC as supplier of carabao’s milk. It allocated a total budget of Php7,099,794 for the purchase of carabao’s milk to be used in feeding programs. 

Meanwhile, DA-PCC identified and tapped its assisted dairy farmer-cooperatives with valid licenses to operate from Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) as suppliers of milk in the feeding program. 

“The DA-PCC, DepEd, and FDA-registered cooperatives had a consultation meeting to determine the volume of carabao’s milk that the co-ops can provide for the program. The total volume that was committed can supply more than 390,000 beneficiaries nationwide,” Ma. Theresa Sawit, PCC’s senior science research specialist and one of the focal persons for the project, said. 

Under the program, all undernourished Kindergarten to Grade 6 pupils, who are also SBFP beneficiaries for hot meals, will receive 200 ml toned carabao’s milk daily for at least 20 feeding days. 

“This program is very timely to help boost their immune system against COVID-19 and improve their milk drinking habit as they grow up,” Sawit said. 

Due to the global health crisis, each municipality will have its designated drop-off points for the delivery, inspection, and acceptance of the milk products. From the drop-off points, DepEd will conduct a house-to-house distribution of carabao’s milk to the beneficiaries. 

The milk feeding program, which supposedly started in March but was delayed due to the pandemic, is expected to commence in August in time for the proposed opening of classes. 

Apart from DA-PCC, DepEd also collaborates with the National Dairy Authority in the implementation of the Milk Feeding Program.

CDO farmers engage in carabao farming

More than 50 select farmers and their families in Malasag, F.S. Catanico, and Cugman, Cagayan de Oro City, will soon benefit from the Carabao Development Program (CDP) under a Php2 million-worth project that will help usher carabao-based enterprise development (CBED) in said communities.

This project was initiated through an orientation activity on the components of the CDP and CBED, particularly on draft animal management, last July 2.

The Department of Agriculture-Philippine Carabao Center at Central Mindanao University (DA-PCC at CMU) partners with the Oro Integrated Cooperative (OIC) as the conduit cooperative.

Killian Deveza, business development officer of OIC, gave the farmer-beneficiaries a heads-up on how they can fulfill all the requirements before the animals can be released to them.

“As members of the cooperative, our farmers will be prepared to take on the project and prosper in this new endeavor. The co-op will be supportive of them in this cause and we will see them through until they succeed,” Deveza said.

Fifty female native carabaos and two purebred bulls are scheduled for entrustment to the qualified farmers. The draft animals will aid farmers in tilling their land and in transporting their farm produce.

During the orientation, DA-PCC at CMU Center Director Dr. Lowell Paraguas gave the farmers an overview of what they can expect from being part of the CDP such as services they may avail of in production, marketing, and extension.

“PCC is mandated to conserve, propagate and promote the carabao as a source of milk, meat and draft power. We will continue to uphold this mandate for the benefit of the rural farmers and of the communities that we serve,” Dr. Paraguas said.

Meanwhile, Dr. Elena Paraguas, DA-PCC at CMU’s CBED coordinator, gave her insights on the business opportunities in dairying. While farmers will be initially entrusted with draft animals, she encouraged them to eventually have their animals upgraded for dairying.

“Do not settle for less. Your native carabaos when upgraded into crossbreds are potential source of milk. You can soon engage in the dairy business, which can give you more income,” Dr. Paraguas said.

Topics on animal entrustment and OIC cooperative membership procedures were also discussed  by Jeson Candole, regional information officer of DA-PCC at CMU, and Joie Saquilayan, OIC membership and marketing development officer, respectively.

Facilitating the workshops were Lina Navarro, office staff of CDO 2nd District Representative Rufus Rodriguez, and Ilarda Tabalba, barangay councilor of F.S Catanico.

This project was agreed by Congressman Rodriguez and DA-PCC Executive Director Dr. Arnel Del Barrio during a budget hearing at the House of the Representatives on September 19, 2019.