BY MARCHEL P. ESPINA
The provincial government of Negros Occidental turned over veterinary projects to recipients in Bago City yesterday, to boost livestock production and ensure food security amid the coronavirus threat.
Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson, Vice Governor Jeffrey Ferrer, Provincial Veterinarian Renante Decena, and other provincial officials, along with Bago City Mayor Nicolas Yulo, led the turnover of projects in barangays Lag-asan and Poblacion.
The projects include a free-range chicken multiplier farm, and carabao and goat dairy, which are joint projects of the provincial government and Bago City.
The officials also visited the cattle abattoir with cold storage facility, and swine artificial insemination center and laboratory.
A meat shop equipment was also turned over to the Bago City Hog Raisers Association. The beneficiaries were given breeder piglets for livelihood, and a check for P1.5 million was turned over to the Alliance of Hog Raisers Associations of Negros Occidental and its member-associations, for the swine fattening project.
Lacson said the distribution of breeder stocks under the Provincial Animal Genetic Improvement Program of the Provincial Veterinary Office aims to boost livestock production as a major industry of the province and to ensure food security amid the pandemic.
He added that the meat shop and swine fattening projects will serve as additional sources of livelihood for the recipients.
Meanwhile, the cattle abattoir with cold storage facility, once completed, will cater to cattle raisers to produce prime beef cuts to be marketed within and outside the province, Decena said.
“This includes meat cutting facilities, meat processing and value-adding with storage facilities for chilling and freezing so that we will be able to market beef products to institutional buyers within and outside the province,” he said.
The Swine A.I. and Laboratory Center aims to provide swine raisers, especially the backyard and small-hold, with easy access to good boar semen, services, and technology, giving them the opportunity to improve production and optimize profit, he added.
The breeding facility will also bring economic benefits to swine raisers, AI technicians, and students as a source of boar semen and breeding technology, and will serve as a venue for aspiring technicians and raisers, he added.
Decena, during the turnover, also emphasized to the farmer-recipients the need to have a passion for raising livestock and poultry animals, and for them to know their responsibility as association members and beneficiaries of government programs and projects.
He added that the objective of the program is to primarily help alleviate the economic status of the raisers, by stressing marketing opportunities in raising livestock and poultry.
He also said the focus of the provincial livelihood program extends to the marketing aspect of value-adding and meat processing by conducting actual training to interested raisers and housewives in the barangay.*