Hundreds of animal milk industry stakeholders all over the country will converge in Tagbilaran City as the 21st Dairy Congress and Expo opens at the Bohol Cultural Center today.
The DairyConEx, the largest annual gathering of dairy farmers, government extension and financing institutions, legislators, the private and foreign investors, the academe, the commercial processors, students, the consumers, and the different stakeholders in the dairy industry from all over the country, comes to Bohol to spread the good promise of the dairy industry, which is an emerging industry in Bohol, shared Bohol Provincial Veterinarian Dr. Stella Marie Lapiz, DVD.
Speaking at the Kapihan sa PIA to drum beat the event that will bring to Bohol over a thousand guests and dairy stakeholders, Dr.Lapiz, who was accompanied by officers of the national dairy confederation said it is high time for Boholano farmers to see for themselves the potential in dairy, which can be a major industry here.
According to Dairy Confederation of the Philippines Chairman Isidro Albano, the annual gathering is geared towards substantially raising the productivity and incomes of the dairy farmers.
Other than that, the congress also tackles issues on augmenting the base herd, creating new market niches, and, contributing to the Department of Agriculture’s goal of increasing milk sufficiency in the country by 10%.
Earlier, DA secretary Emmanuel Pinol revealed that the 99% of the country’s dairy needs comes from imports.
Importing these when we can produce our supply can reallocate the money to further help the country’s agriculture, Pinol added.
Along with this, through technology and sharing of best practices, network-building, consolidation of resources, the DairyCenEx intends to further formulate strategies and recommendations for government and private sectors support and legislation to ultimately accelerate the realization of a self-reliant countryside, Albano noted.
The congress which adopts the theme “Moving towards Milk Self Sufficiency,” also situates for Bohol farmers, the strategic road map that the agriculture sector adopts to realize the dream of transforming Bohol into the dairy capital of the country.
Dairy confederation revealed that as of now, the 1% of the country’s dairy requirement is largely produced by Batangay and Central Luzon provinces.
But with a new plan to import Girolandocattles, not from Brazil which is Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD)-free but still vaccinates their herd, but from Mexico which has the same FMD-free and non-vaccinating status as the Philippines.
Girolandos, in currentPhilippine testing, has produced an average of 22 liters per day, reports Albano, who also think that cross breeding these to the native breeds can also significantly increase milk production in the communities.
This is a great opportunity for Bohol and we accepted the challenge because we are very positive that the sector can contribute to the goal of increasing the country’s milk production, Dr.Lapiz said.
She said of the two milk sources, Bohol has already attained the 1,000 liters a day from carabao and cow dairy, and while Central Visayas is the country’s 4th largest cow milk producer, 35% of the region’s cow milk is from Bohol, stressing that farmers’ participation is very crucial here.
According to Dr.Lapiz, with Bohol Dairy Producers Association and with the government and the private sector collaborating in the project, animal authorities in Bohol have started organizing and training farmers on the aspects of the industry.
She added that the government has funded medicines, vaccination and the technical upgrading of the stakeholders just as every animal farmer in Bohol is looking at the project as a quick way out of poverty. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)