Mayor Cesareo Benedito Jr. (4th from left in red polo shirt) with the Aribungos Coco FA members and officials of DA-MIMAROPA. | Photo from DA-MIMAROPA

The Aribungos Coconut Farmers Association in Brooke’s Point received 30 heads of cattle worth P1.5 million from the Department of Agriculture (DA)-MIMAROPA under its Livestock-Based Livelihood Enterprise and Development Program for Cattle Production.

The aim of this program is to increase the income of farmers by providing technical assistance, inputs, and production support to help them establish an enterprise, according to the DA-MIMAROPA

The Aribungos Coconut Farmers Association (Aribungos Coconut FA) was chosen as the beneficiary by the local government unit of Brooke’s Point due to the vastness of their coconut plantation which can serve as a suitable location for raising cattle. The 30 members of the association received one head of cattle each.

“Napakaganda ng future ng livestock dito sa amin dahil dito ang pinakamalawak na niyogan dito sa Palawan. Alam naman natin na sa pagniniyogan ay mayroong malawak na lupa at mga damo sa ilalim na bagay na bagay pag-alagaan ng baka. Napakalaking tulong po nito para sa ating mga magsasaka (The future of livestock here in our area is very promising because we have the largest coconut plantation in Palawan. As we know, coconut plantations have vast lands and grasses underneath that are suitable for cattle rearing. This is a huge help for us farmers),” said municipal agriculturist Renato Bacosa.

The members of the association expressed their gratitude for the cattle rearing assistance provided by the DA. The Livestock-Based Livelihood Enterprise and Development Program for Cattle Production is a program implemented by the DA.

It seeks to support farmers in developing livestock-based livelihoods, particularly in areas where there are ample grazing lands and forage resources for cattle rearing.

“Lubos akong nagpapasalamat sa Department of Agriculture na may binigay silang tulong sa amin na bakahan. Ito ay napakahalaga sa aming mga magsasaka dahil ito ay malaking tulong sa amin kung ito ay mapapalago namin para sa aming hanapbuhay (I am deeply grateful to the Department of Agriculture for providing us with cattle. This is very important for us farmers because it can greatly contribute to our livelihood if we can successfully raise and multiply them),” said Susan Macabutas.

The DA said it expects farmers to benefit from the initiative by utilizing the technical assistance, inputs, and production support provided to establish and manage their own cattle production enterprise.

It also encourages farmers to properly care for and breed the cattle they receive, as well as actively participate in artificial insemination (AI) activities to expand the cattle population within their community.

By leveraging the resources and support provided by the program, the DA expects farmers to enhance their agricultural productivity, increase their income, and contribute to the overall growth of the livestock industry in their respective areas.

“Nais ko lamang magpasalamat sa DA at sa LGU ng Brooke’s Point. Maraming salamat sa lahat ng tumulong sa amin at malaking tulong ito sa mga farmer na katulad namin. Maraming salamat sa baka na ibinigay sa amin, ito ay aalagaan namin hanggang makapanganak dahil malaki po ang magiging pakinabang nito sa amin (I would like to thank the DA and the LGU of Brooke’s Point. Many thanks to everyone who helped us. This is a great help for farmers like us. We will take care of the cattle given until they give birth because they will bring significant benefits to us),” said Arcelito Inso.

Aside from the 30 members who received livestock, the farmers’ organization hopes to multiply the cattle using Artificial Insemination (AI) with the help of DA-MIMAROPA, so that additional members of the association can also raise cattle.

“Amin pong aalagaan at paparamihin ang mga baka na ito para yung mga miyembro na hindi po nabigyan ay mabiyayaan din at magkaroon ng karagdagang kita (We will take care of and multiply these cattle so that other members who were not given can also benefit and have additional income),” said Onsing Melada.

The turnover ceremony took place on April 3 in Brgy. Barong-Barong, Brooke’s Point, led by the DA-MIMAROPA Livestock Program represented by Rissa Lavilla, and the Municipal Agriculture Office led by Bacosa. (R. Rodriguez)

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