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The Department of Agriculture (DA) Region IV-CALABARZON through its Agribusiness and Marketing Assistance Division (AMAD) conducted an agribusiness investment forum on native pig for some of the industry’s stakeholders, held on May 21 – 22, 2019 at St. Jude Coop Hotel and Event Center in Tayabas City, Quezon.

Some 20 native pig raisers and would-be raisers of Atimonan Livestock Raisers’ Association, Southern Bondoc Peninsula Producers’ Cooperative of Mulanay, Concepcion Pinagbakuran Farmers’ Association of Sariaya, and Tayabas Federation of Rural Improvement Club (RIC), Inc. attended the said forum.

The forum has the objective of making the participants become more aware of the advantages and opportunities of native pig raising and in the supply chain, and in the process, encourage them to invest more in the industry.

In the process of the forum, problems and other concerns like demand for quality and a steady supply of native pigs for lechon; standardization of production procedures for native pigs and other native animals; and marketing and trading systems and strategies were raised and discussed.

From DA initiatives through Regional Livestock Program and Research Division, project like multiplier farm for sustainable dispersal program of farm animals; production inputs such as feeds, housing, and medication; important features of native pigs including its taste, adaptability to the environment, and ability to live on low-quality feeds, among others; and practices for sustainable breed development and management towards profitable use such as meat processing and manufacturing were discussed by Mr. Wilmer S. Faylon, DA-Organic Agriculture Research and Development Center (OARDC) Officer-In-Charge.

From business sector and entrepreneurship, Mr. Fabian Maximillian Cabriga of Teofely Nature Farms and Philippine Native Pig Owners’ Network Association, Inc. (PNPONAI) shared his experiences with the operation of the farm; encouraged the raisers to adopt “natural farming protocols” to be their standard in breeding, managing, feeding, housing, and caring for their native pigs; and invited them to attend their free seminars and hands-on workshops about natural raising of pigs at his farm. Whereas, Mr. Ramon Ferreros of La Loma Lechoneros’ Association emphasized that with efficient marketing channels, native pig raisers could achieve optimum economic benefits. That is why their group addresses the major concerns of farmers which is sure buyers, wherein the best buying price can be made available to them. In fact, he revealed that more than 90% of his suppliers of native pigs are from the province of Quezon and most of them have higher incomes.

Moreover, for the participants to have access to government financial assistance and insurance programs, agricultural credit/loan programs offered by Landbank of the Philippines and Development Bank of Philippines; and agricultural insurance programs of Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) were introduced to them. CARD Bank, Inc.’s programs to assist micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to start, grow, and expand their business were also presented.

Towards the end of the activity, each group drafted and presented their action plans and its implementation. These were submitted to AMAD for proper and immediate action and assistance.

Agricultural Program Coordinating Office of Quezon and Office of the Provincial Veterinarian supported the forum.

This event also aims to encourage other farmers’ associations and cooperatives to be more organized, empower, and capacitate their groups for a successful native pig industry in the CALABARZON region. • ARC, DA-RAFIS