The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) in Negros Occidental, in partnership with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and Eco Agri Foundation, launched the household-level muscovado product of its assisted-agrarian reform beneficiary organization (Arbo) in Barangay Dulao, Bago City recently.
Provincial Agrarian Reform Program Officer II Lucrecia Taberna said that through the agency’s Social Entrepreneurship Program (SEP), DAR allocated about P300,000 to help the Sta. Rita Farmers Multi-purpose Cooperative in producing their muscovado product.
The project is seen to benefit 74 members of the recipient-Arbo.
It also includes components like resource mapping analysis, identification of social issues and potential enterprise, conduct of market study and the preparation of financial aspect and finalization of the comprehensive social enterprise plan.
Under the SEP, DAR-Negros Occidental II utilized a social entrepreneurship concept aimed at achieving social change through establishing new business ventures.
DAR along with partner-agency DTI conducted the product development trainings while Eco Agri Foundation provided the equipment to the farmers.
The agency said the program also focuses on enhancing the social capital within the community by encouraging participation, inclusion and utilization of bottom-up approach to achieve development.
“It has provided technical expertise to recipient-agrarian beneficiaries by involving them in social enterprising through provision of trainings and community awareness activities,” DAR said, adding that the program also promotes the use of sustainable and eco-friendly technologies.
The Sta. Rita Farmers Multi-Purpose Cooperative is one of the four Arbos in the province identified by the agency to become project-recipients.
DAR-Negros Occidental II is also set to launch the products of the three other Arbos this year.
During the launching, members of the recipient-Arbo said that aside from the product development aspect, they hope that DAR and other partner-agencies will help them introduce and position their product properly to the market.
The launching held at the Guanzon Balgos Elementary School was attended by DAR-Negros Island Region personnel headed by Regional Director Stephen Leonidas, representatives of partner-agencies, and barangay and city officials.