DAIRY industry will take centerstage during the 17th Davao Trade Expo (Date 2015) with the re-introduction of a credit assistance program for industry players, dubbed as “Masustansyang Inumin para sa Likas na Kalusugan (Milk).”
The program is being initiated by the National Dairy Authority (NDA) in a bid to boost dairy production in the country.
“At present, dairy production in the Philippines is heavily dependent on imports. There is a need for the industry to accelerate and increase the local production to lessen our dependency from import,” Marilyn Mabale, NDA department manager for Mindanao, said in Monday’s edition of Kapehan sa Dabaw at the SM City Annex.
NDA, in partnership with Land Bank of the Philippines and the Development Bank of the Philippines, through the Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc.’s (DCCCII) Date 2015, will highlight and introduce dairy in the event.
The Milk program will make available financial and technical assistance for the production, processing and marketing activities of dairy cooperatives, farmers and other local industry stakeholders to help improve their productivity and increase their income.
It likewise aims to help increase domestic milk production in the country.
Under the agreement, the NDA has committed P30 million in credit support and technical assistance.
Wilfred T. Teves, Date 2015 chair, told Sun.Star Davao in a recent interview that they “want to highlight that banks are very interested to support in the development and expansion of dairy industry. Especially here in Mindanao where NDA is promoting the Dairy Multiplier Farm.”
At present, NDA data showed that about 97 percent of the dairy industry is imported from New Zealand, Australia, and other milk-producing countries while only three percent is contributed by the local dairy production.
“The three percent share of the domestic dairy production can be translated to 20 million liters per year from the 9,000 dairy cows but it is only 10 percent of the country’s demand,” Mabale said.
Of the 20 million liters figure, Mindanao’s share is about 6,000-7,000 liters.
She also said that the Philippines has an annual import cost of $70 billion.
“We have P270-million budget per year allocated by government. Large bulk of it goes to the small players in the dairy industry. We develop farmers to do the production of milk, we introduce our programs and services to small and big farmers for them to participate in the production site. This includes trainings, loan for owning cows, technical assistance on how to manage and raise the cows, quality assurance, and even installation of the processing plants,” she said.