Batangas Coop more than doubles processed meat production under DOST program
A Batangas-based farmers group, the Buklod-Unlad Multi-purpose Cooperative, has tapped the Department of Science and Technology’s Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program (SETUP) to double its processed meat production.
Buklod-Unlad started in 1991 with only 44 members composed of relatives in Taysan, Batangas but opened itself to public membership so that it can avail of incentives with the Cooperative Development Authority.
The goal of Buklod-Unlad was to strengthen agriculture and trading by farmers through financing and new farming techniques. By 2008, the cooperative has launched its Alagaan Pangkabuhayan, an integrated pig production program which espouses the “from conception to consumption” system of pig production, with some members growing the cassava and corn for the feeds and other members raising the hogs.
When pork prices are low, the cooperative used its own pork supply to make their own processed meat under the Cerdo Real brand. The processed meat operations, however, was not making money for the cooperative, with margins eaten up only by power costs.
Buklod-Unlad tapped the DOST’s SETUP, a scheme to help small and medium enterprises use technological innovations to improve business efficiency and productivity. Under SETUP, the cooperative was able to acquire a meat grinder, mixer, cooking vat, vacuum sealer, and freezer. The program also helped it with label design and execution.
Prior to tapping the DOST’s program, the cooperative only earned P150,000 from its processed meat operations. After the program, the cooperative now earns P350,000 to P400,000 a month with a capacity of 2.5 tons a month. (By: Eileen A. Mencias)