S. Kudarat agribiz sector gets a boost

Arthur Aller, RCDC chair, said they have endorsed the proposed development of a corn processing and marketing facility in the province, the launching of capability building programs for agrarian reform communities and the implementation of livelihood projects for fisher folks in the province’s coastal areas.

He said these projects were earlier elevated to the council for approval and endorsement to the implementing government agencies.

Topping the list is the proposed tie-up between the provincial government of Sultan Kudarat and government-owned and controlled firm National Agribusiness Corporation (NABCOR) for the establishment of a modern grains center and a corn marketing program in the area, he said.

Aller said the proposed facility, aimed at helping stabilize the markets for locally-produced corn, would cost at least P20 million.

NABCOR, a marketing arm of the Department of Agriculture, initially signified to invest some P15 million for the program. The local government will shoulder the remaining P5 million as counterpart fund.

The proposed project would be jointly implemented by NABCOR and the Corn Clusters Cooperative Federation of the province.

Nestor Casador, Sultan Kudarat provincial agriculturist, said the project will help address the worsening productivity and marketing woes of local corn farmers, especially during the rainy season.

He said a significant volume of corn harvested from the area during the rainy season usually goes to waste due to low quality.

He added that the facility will allow local farmers to store, process and eventually market their produce at their best quality.

Aside from the corn facility, the council also approved a cooperative program that would focus on the implementation of capacity building programs between the provincial government and the Support to Agrarian Reform Communities in Central Mindanao.

Through the program, members and leaders of cooperatives based in agrarian reform communities would undergo various training activities to improve their capacity to implement and manage several local projects.

The council also endorsed the provincial government’s efforts to bring more viable fishery-based livelihood projects to local cooperatives in the coastal areas through assistance of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources. (Allen V. Estabillo/MindaNews)