Philippines

DA, Landbank, Thai firm partner to boost agriculture

By Ernie Esconde 

AGREEMENT. Agriculture Secretary William Dar (third from left) lead the signing of a memorandum of agreement among the Department of Agriculture, and officials of Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP) and Charoen Pokphand Foods Philippines Corporation (CPFP) at the CPFP Aqua Feedmill Plant in Samal, Bataan on Friday (Feb. 18, 2022). Under the MOA, LBP and CPFP agreed to provide credit, technical, and marketing support to potential borrowers for hog, poultry, and shrimp enterprises. (Photo by Department of Agriculture Region 3)

SAMAL, Bataan – The Department of Agriculture (DA), Land Bank of the Philippines (LBP), and Thai company Charoen Pokphand Foods Philippines Corporation (CPFPC) have partnered to support hog, poultry, and aqua raisers to expand their business operations.

A memorandum of agreement (MOA) was signed Friday at the Thai firm’s aqua feeds plant in this town by DA Secretary William Dar, LBP President and CEO Cecilia Borromeo, and CPFPC Vice Chairman and President Sakol Cheewakoset.

Bataan Vice Governor Ma. Cristina Garcia and Samal Mayor Aida Macalinao witnessed the signing.

“Napakagandang project ito kasi (This is a very nice project because) it will boost our food security. Alam naman natin na kumakain tayo three times a day siyempre kung mahal ang bibilhin nating pagkain ay kaunting pagkain lang ang mabibili natin. (We eat three times a day and of course, if the costs of food are expensive, we can only buy a few). So, with this project ay makakatulong na mabawasan ang mga importations natin dito sa Pilipinas (it could help reduce the importations here in the Philippines),” Garcia said during the event.

Cheewakoset said the partnership and cooperation with LBP and CPFPC were about providing credit, technical, and marketing support to potential borrowers for hog and shrimp enterprises.

He said the CPFPC remains to be one of the most active integrators in the livestock and poultry industry and was tapped by DA to help in the hog repopulation, rehabilitation, and recovery program of the government.

Through the MOA, CPFPC is committed to referring to LBP their investors that will be needing financing to build bio-secure facilities for the growing and breeding of hogs, chicken, and shrimp, as well as capital expenditure and operating expenses for franchises of the company’s meat shop and roasted and fried chicken station.

The Thai firm also committed to remit to LBP contractual fees due to growers to ensure payment of loan amortization.

Cheewakoset said that in support of DA’s initiative to cluster backyard hog raisers, CPFPC is willing to engage the cooperatives or associations of clustered farmers into a contract growing scheme even at an initial capacity of 300 hogs.

The standard requirement of CPFPC is 1,200 heads.

The Thai firm employs 3,000 Filipino workers.

Borromeo said the government-owned LBP will extend financing support to CPFPC’s clustered farmer–fisher groups, cooperatives, micro, small and medium enterprises, and other agri-enterprises for the acquisition and construction of bio-secured buildings and other facilities to boost production.

“We welcome the partnership to advance the competitiveness of swine, poultry, and aqua industry players nationwide. Land Bank will continue to provide appropriate financing support to meet the growing domestic demand of the agriculture sector towards food security and job generation,” the LBP head said. (PNA)

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