DOST enhances support to food processing entrep in Ilocos


VIGAN CITY – Ayen’s Food Products (AFP) here in this city can look forward to enhanced support provided by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) 1 through the Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program (SETUP) to strengthen the business transformation and achieve quality growth.

Last June 10, 2016, DOST 1 Regional Director Armando Q. Ganal awarded  P1,500,000.00 worth of assistance to AFP for the acquisition of a 4-ton capacity walk-in freezer and execution of packaging materials for longganisa, at the Provincial Science and Technology Center here.

The AFP was established in 2003 and engaged in the production of longganisa, embutido and shanghai rolls.

Recognizing the importance of the DOST program, Ms. Cristeta Cheng, owner of the firm, is eyeing to increase the number of their clients or markets by 20% and productivity of the firm by at least 15% within a year.

Cheng said that through the assistance given by DOST 1, her firm can already increase the volume of production of their processed meat products and cater to additional clients especially in the supermarkets within the locality and outside the province.

Meanwhile, Vigan City’s famous longganisa product continues to receive upgrading of its production through the SET UP of the DOST to boost its competitiveness and productivity, Ramon Sumabat, DOST Ilocos Sur chief, said.

Amanda Gonzales Longganisa is one of the three longganisa makers of barangay Capangpangan that received technology upgrading. In 2006, it became a recipient of this upgrading and its sales perked up with the speedy, efficient production process brought by the machines.

Last year, it received another set of upgrading worth P1,935,000.00 with one stainless steel meat grinder, one vacuum packaging machine, one working table, one six-ton capacity walk-in freezer, label design and packaging materials, plant lay-outing and food safety assessment.

Amanda Gonzales, the owner, began making long-ganisa, bagnet and chicharon in 1997, as her barangay is near the ‘pagpartian’ or slaughter house. In 2005, her business was registered at the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).  With various aid from government agencies like DOST and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), the firm grew.

SETUP was implemented in the province in 2002 to boost the competitiveness and productivity of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) by giving collateral and interest-free loan for techno-logy innovations, as well as manpower training, Sumabat said.

He said those who are interested in the project must only visit the DOST Vigan office in Barangay Tamag. The priority sectors eligible for SETUP aid are: food processing, furniture, gifts, house wares and decors, marine and aquatic resources, horticulture and agriculture, metals and engineering, information and commu-nications technology, and pharmaceuticals.

SETUP has been developing Filipino MSMEs and this has been ushering in job creation, opening  new markets, booming  sales and profits, and improving the personal lives of the business owners, and their employees, Sumabat said. (With reports from Imelda C. Rivero, PIA 1, Ilocos Sur & Monette H. Herrera, DOST Project Assistant II)