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Philippine Department of Agriculture opens food processing, trading center

FBR Staff Writer Published 06 November 2013

The Philippine Department of Agriculture (DA) has opened Agri-Pinoy Tobacco Farmers Food Processing and Trading Center in Narvacan, Ilocos Sur.

The PHP165m ($3.82m) food processing center produces meat products, including bagnet, longganisa, zesty bacon, ham, barbecue, tapa, and tocino.

These products will be distributed across Ilocos Region and Metro Manila by DA-Agribusiness Marketing Assistance Service.

The facility houses an abattoir with a daily capacity of 200 heads, a chicken dressing plant with a 200/head per hour capacity.

This project is a part of National Tobacco Administration's (NTA) commitment to improve economic conditions and elevate tobacco farmers' life in the northern provinces of the Philippines.

NTA has allotted an additional investment of around PHP35m ($80777) as working capital for the facility.

Commenting on the development, NTA Corporate planning manager Rex Antonio Tecson said that the project responds to the marketing needs of farmers by eliminating layers of middlemen both in buying agricultural inputs and in selling their products, resulting to lower production cost and higher income.

Senate Committee on Agriculture Chairperson Cynthia Villar said, "The Agri-Pinoy Center will provide opportunities not only for the tobacco farmers but for their children as well by encouraging the younger generations to get involved in farming, side by side with their parents."