DA provides P30M starter bonus for Bohol dairy farmers

Boholano dairy stakeholders get P30 million in starter funds from the Department of Agriculture (DA), by simply signifying their intent to help the government attain the goal of cutting imported dairy products.

DA Secretary Emmanuel Piñol, in his Tapatan Forum with the dairy stakeholders and members of the Bohol Dairy Producers Association, January 26, wanted to get the pulse of the livestock growers specifically those organized by both the Philippine Carabao Center (PCC) and the National Dairy (NDA) Authority at the Ubay Stock Farm about the government plan to increase the local dairy production enough to cover at least 10% of the country’s requirements by 2022.

NDA Administrator Marilyn Mabale said that would be about 190,000 metric tons of milk production.

On his first official visit to Bohol last week, Sec. Pinol laid to the farmers the government’s plan to increase the dairy production by increasing the dairy herd population, which would also demand cultivation of forage for the farm animals

Piñol told the farmers gathered at the PCC Conference Hall that the country has been spending so much on food items like mongo, cacao, coffee and dairy it imports, when these could be produced locally.

The DA eyes Ubay Stock Farm (USF) as the breeding area and where multiplier farms, milk production and processing centers would be built, milking sheds and trainings centers would also be erected to accommodate the planned 5,000 girolando cattle breeds to be brought in from Brazil.

Girolando, he said is now the world’s top dairy producer, citing one which gave 109 liters of milk in a day’s milking.

Now, we don’t dream of getting that, he told the awed farmers. We’d like to just dream of 20 liters from a cow in a day and that would be good enough, he shared.

The cattle  which are now under quarantine in Brazil would seen be flown to Bohol after these have sufficiently shown they are not carriers of any diseases as a way of protecting the local livestock industry, would soon be lent for communal farms to be managed by people’s organizations.

The coming cattle would be preceded by building of modern milking sheds, a god marketing set up which would generate employment and lead to modernized people’s organizations organized into cooperatives.

The other goal, he said is not to get into individual dispersal where poor farmers are often pushed to sell the farm animal.

The cattle, which would be milked would have calves, these would be dispersed at 240 calves for each cooperative, and members would be taught how to care for these animals to mature into milking cows, of which the calves would again be dispersed, Piñol shared to the eager stakeholders.

At present, using carabao, a farm family ears between 4-6 liters of milk every day, while cattle dairy adopters who are nurturing other foreign breeds of cattle also get about the same amount.

These animals however, unlike the girolando, are not suited to the tropics, so they cave issues with the Philippine climate, scientists revealed.

The girolando, which was accidentally bred in Brazil, is already attuned to the tropics, and would suit the Philippines perfectly, Piñol said.

As to the fresh funds, observers said this should be a good starting cash for the dairy cooperative to set up the needed facilities to be ready for the arrival of the dairy breeders.  (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)

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