by: MAY CELESTINE S. NERY, CDS II
Guinobatan, Albay – The Tunay Tapat Lahing Pilipino Cooperative in Libon, Albay Is the second cooperative to receive a CFIDP-Shared Processing Facilities in Bicol Region next to Ragay Coco Eskwela Turismo Kabuhayan Agriculture Cooperative (Ragay Coco Sentral) in Ragay, Camarines Sur. The said facilities were awarded on September 21, 2023 at COCOFED Building, PCA-ARC Guinobatan, Albay which was attended by coop officers and members and different implementing agencies including the Cooperative Development Authority.
The ceremony was facilitated by the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) and Philippine Center for Postharvest Development and Mechanization (PHilMech). PCA Regional Manager Mateo B. Zipagan expressed his joy during his welcome message, as the coconut farmers are now reaping the benefits of Coco Levy Funds which have been waiting for several decades to be released. On behalf of Hon. Wilfredo V. Maronilla, Mr. Norberto S. Quite, Municipal Cooperative Officers of Libon, Albay encouraged the officers and members of the cooperative to always fulfill their responsibilities – take part in the improvement of its operation and be the model cooperative in their municipality. CDA OIC-Regional Director Atty. Emilio D. Escueta III emphasized in his speech the significance of being faithful to achieve success, he left them a challenge to be active and sustainable in the years to come until the coop’s maximum term of 50 years was reached. DTI Assistant Regional Director Joseph Rañola expressed his support to the cooperative, being born in Libon, Albay he is looking forward to the success of the project.Mr. Alvin Trespeses discussed the Coconut Farmers and Industry Development Plan which contains the projects and programs for coconut farmers for the first five years of implementation. Engr. Christian Rod De Vera presented the perspective of the White Copra Processing Center Project that costs a total of Twenty Million Forty Thousand One Hundred Pesos (Php 20,040,100.00) which is composed of building amounting to Php 6,215,100.00 and Php 13,825,000.00 worth of equipment.Mr. Josias B. Pedrocello, Chairperson of the Tunay Tapat Lahing Pilipino Cooperative thanked all the implementing agencies for extending assistance for the realization of the project. He expressed his appreciation to the CDA in extending help by conducting mandatory training for its officers and members which is the lacking requirement for the issuance of Certificate of Compliance (COC). The awarding ceremony ended with a message of support from Senator Cynthia A. Villar who is the principal Author of the RA 11524 or the Coconut Farmers and Industry Trust Fund Act followed by signing of the Pledge of Commitment of each implementing agency to ensure the successful implementation of the project.After the Awarding Ceremony, the Regional Inter-Agency Technical Committee (RIATC) Meeting was held, each implementing agency presented their accomplishments for the month of September, 2023. PCA Regional Manager Zipagan suggested inviting the first two (2) cooperative beneficiaries of CFIDP-Shared Processing Facilities to extend additional help while the facilities are being constructed. The RIATC meeting can be an avenue for the cooperatives for possible business ventures that may help in covering the possible losses that may be incurred during the construction because it will eventually affect their usual operation.