What was once an unproductive land intended only for turmeric farming has now become a site for relaxation and a haven for endemic and wildlife species.
Located in the northern craggy outskirts of Puerto Princesa City in Bacungan village, this farm called “Yamang Bukid,” has not only flourished into a turmeric plantation but also a favorite tourist destination and a shelter for animals.
With its goal of “Doing Business with a Heart”, the Baguio City-based agricultural corporation is strongly motivated to help every major city in the country towards community empowerment and having a sustainable environment.
The Yamang Bukid team aims to help more Palaweños in making a living through its first outlets in several malls in Puerto Princesa.
Upon branching out into the supermarkets, the team needed raw materials for its main products, the 10-in-1 Turmeric Tea. With this in mind, Yamang Bukid thought of setting up its own turmeric plantation.
With the establishment of the 1.2-hectare Yamang Bukid farmland in Bacungan in late 2017, the management started planting turmeric to serve as first-person suppliers for their products that usually comes from Baguio City.
To preserve the natural ecosystem, Yamang Bukid gave employment opportunities to residents of Bacungan to let them live happy lives with their families while taking care of the business.
The locals were a massive help to the great potentials that were seen in terms of agriculture, forestry and animal farming.
With the turmeric farm’s success, other neighboring lot owners offered their properties which Yamang Bukid welcomed as an opportunity for possible future plans that will also benefit them and the enhancement of the area’s biodiversity and environmental preservation.
The successful evolution of the Yamang Bukid farm was made possible by its founder, along with the help of several hired farmer and farming experts, including Eleerico Tabal, a registered agriculturist, PhD candidate of Agronomy Science, Organic Agriculture and Urban Gardening, and and Glenn Lasaca Calipus, doctor of veterinary medicine, PhD candidate Animal Physiology and Molecular Biology.
Yamang Bukid also believes in giving second chances to people when they hired dozens of farmers who used to be illegal loggers, cutting down at least three fully-grown trees on a daily basis.
Through Yamang Bukid’s guidance and moral support, no more trees were cut down because the farmers had been given the opportunity to redeem themselves and give back what they had taken away from nature.
When the farmers or employees started showing doubts about the future of the Yamang Bukid’s business sustainability, the management team came up with fresh marketing ideas and strategies to help sustain the farm’s income.
Firing people to make ends meet was not an option for the Yamang Bukid management. What it did was to plant and organically grow medicinal herbs, ornamental, and fruit-bearing plants that became real beauties and attractions.
In addition to its agricultural success, a few of the farm’s employees launched the House of Kakanin as additional income for the farmers’ wives who are equipped with skills in making several delicacies through the use of the Yamang Bukid’s own crops.
What made them special is the indigenous way they were packaged by Yamang Bukid for its clients and customers.
Thanks to the House of Kakanin because it served as a stepping stone for Yamang Bukid to generate the needed income.
At present, Yamang Bukid is one of the most visited sites in Puerto Princesa City, trailblazing in the field of “farm tourism” in Palawan.
Among its attractions are its sunflower garden, organically-grown vegetables, healthy products, potted herb and medicinal plants, arts masterfully created by their employees, and the freshest sloping hills environment that is good for friends, relatives, and families from all walks of life.
What’s more is the bright smiles of the workers and farmers in Yamang Bukid that speak about warm welcome, hospitality, and friendliness.
Despite the 45-minute drive from the center of the city, the farm is a piece of paradise worth traveling to.
With its goal to be a one-stop shop, the farm had put up a restaurant in its refreshing ambiance that is characterized by canopies of mango and other trees. Visitors can relax and find their inner peace under these trees while enjoying home-cooked meals offered by the restaurant.
Daily visitors may find it interesting that their food scraps and disposable goods are never wasted in the Yamang Bukid farm.
They are set aside, composted, and used as fertilizers on the plants in the surrounding area of the farm.
Plastic bottles are used as ornaments or any do-it-yourself usable items if not filled up with soil for outdoor and indoor hanging plants to further the place’s lush atmosphere.
Effective this month, Yamang Bukid will start building its water treatment facility as part of its preparation for possible tourist influx given the approaching peak season.
Yamang Bukid is not just a farm, it is also a sanctuary for different endemic wild species such as birds, tree animals, bees, butterflies and other crawling insects that help preserve the ecosystem in the area.
In the midst of all of these, Yamang Bukid wants its visitors to not only consider it as an attraction that can be visited once but as a place that is “truly their home away from home.”