Elyu farmers receive buffaloes for fattening

As one component of the Department of Agriculture’s Ahon Lahat, Pagkaing Sapat Kontra COVID-19 (ALPAS COVID-19) Program, 30 buffaloes for fattening were entrusted to farmer-members of Sudipen Dairy Farmers Association in Barangay Castro, Sudipen, La Union last July 1.

The initiative is under one of the four components of the project called Unlad Lahi Project (ULaP), whose objective is to increase milk and meat production, create jobs, and provide livelihood for displaced farmers.

The DA-Philippine Carabao Center at Don Mariano Marcos Memorial State University (DA-PCC@DMMMSU), headed by its Officer in Charge Center Director Vilma Gagni, in partnership with the local government unit of La Union, spearheaded the activity.

“Kung mangangarap lang din tayo, lakihan na natin (If we’re going to dream, we better make it big),” DA-PCC Executive Director Dr. Arnel del Barrio said in a motivational speech addressing the recipients of the buffaloes.

He said their small-scale association could very well become provincewide someday.

Marvin Macanas, chairman of the recipient association and a village-based AI technician, expressed his gratitude to PCC and the LGU of La Union for this project that is expected to provide livelihood opportunities to farmers.

After the short program, community feeding of more than 20 select children with 200 ml pasteurized carabao’s milk was conducted under Gulay, Isda, Gatas at Karne (GIGK), which is another project component of ALPAS COVID-19.

The feeding program coincided with the celebration of the Nutrition Month with the theme “Batang Pinoy SANA TALL… Iwas stunting, SANA ALL!” with the objective of raising awareness on stunting among Filipino children and eventually reducing its prevalence.

A meeting between the Provincial Government of La Union and DA-PCC was also held to discuss the implementation of Dairy Buffalo-based Enterprise Project to be funded by Senator Cynthia Villar wherein at least 60 dairy carabaos, milk processing equipment and milk outlet will be covered.