San Jose City's top dairy coop has new shared service facility

March 27, 2015 2:24 am 

SCIENCE CITY OF MUNOZ, Nueva Ecija, March 25 — The Eastern Primary Multi-Purpose Cooperative (EPMPC) of San Jose City has a new shared service facility that is seen to boost its fresh carabao milk production level.

The shared service facility was jointly put up by Philippine Carabao Center (PCC), Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the San Jose City local government unit.

The facility houses the cooperative's refrigerators, freezers, cooking equipment and a new cooling tank donated by PCC.

The cooling tank can store 300 liters of milk under a temperature of 4 degrees Celsius and can keep milk safe for three days.

The EPMPC was organized and accredited in 1992. It first ventured into farming onions and rice but due to the limited seasonal harvest of crops, its members were unable to cope with their loan obligations and the cooperative experienced serious financial problem.

In 2000, the cooperative was granted by PCC a 25-head module of purebred dairy buffaloes and one bull.

From that point on, the EPMPC started its successful recovery.

At present, the cooperative has 50 active members and registered an income of Php503,325 in 2014.

Noting that the EPMPC is among the top-performing dairy cooperatives, Dr. Arnel N. del Barrio, acting PCC executive director, congratulated the cooperative for being the first to milk carabaos twice a day in the entire Philippines.

"Now I salute you, you are the real number one," del Barrio said.

Aside from being a PCC-assisted group, the EPMPC is also a part of DAR's Village Level Processing Center Enhancement Project (VLPCEP).

The VLPCEP aims to help "develop market-competitive Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Organizations' products and enhance enterprise and livelihood activities at the community level in selected agrarian reform areas through assistance in product value-adding, improvement of facilities, and assistance in documentation and license application."

Eladio L. Duran, DTI Nueva Ecija division chief, meanwhile, donated in behalf of his department a refrigerator for milk storage.

For her part, San Jose City Mayor Marivic V. Belena recognized the carabao as a year-round source of income.

She said that compared to rice and onions, which are also primary commodities of the city, the carabao can be a source of income for the whole year while the crops are only harvested bi-annually.

She also expressed hope that the the city will be recognized for being a top producer of carabao milk and hailed for its quality carabao milk products.

"We became successful because we saw the carabao milk as a business. That in this business, there is no waste, everyday there is profit. Not like rice and onions that can be destroyed by storm and strong rains, all seasons are in favor of the carabao, so long as you give it proper care and treatment," Melchor R. Correa, EPMPC chairman, said. (PNA)

LAP/ZST/MCV/PS

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