Sunflower production to boost income for Surigao coops
by Fryan E. Abkilan
Surigao del Norte (17 June) -- In line with the development of the Sunflower Bio-diesel project in the country, the Surigao del Norte Alliance of Cooperatives (SUDENACO) is encouraging local agri-cooperatives to engage into Sunflower production to provide them additional income.
SUDENACO Gen. Manager Leopoldo Lugo said they have successfully conducted a seminar on Sunflower production last June 12 in line with the celebration of the 111th Philippine Independence Day to farmers and cooperatives in the province.
The seminar was conducted by the Cooperative Union of the Philippines in coordination with the Provincial Cooperative Union and SUDENACO wherein some 40 participants were able to attend the said activity.
It was learned that this project falls under the Integrated Improvised Crop Farming System. Under such system, the coops will manage the farms in a professionally and systematic manner and own the processing farms at the same time, thus sparing the burden of farmers being exploited. The good news here, according to Lugo is that Land Bank of the Philippines agreed to fund the Sunflower Bio-diesel project.
He said coops can expect profit for about P78, 000.00 or more per hectare in just 105 days time. With this, coops can have it planted three (3) times a year.
Lugo also revealed that participants of the recently conducted seminar will be prioritized by Land Bank to avail of loan amounted to P33, 000.00 per hectare.
With this project, Lugo is optimistic that this is in time to provide additional employment for the agri-coop members especially in the middle of a global financial crisis.
Viewing sunflower as energy source, it can do wonders in helping reduce the country's demand for fossil fuels with a highly progressive outlook.
It was also learned that the development of sunflower production equally translates into high employment potentials while creating that happy balance towards food sufficiency and energy independence. There are also potentials for creating agri-tourism, whereas visitors can get a hands-on feel on how sunflower is processed into various derivatives, right at the locales where these take place. (PIA-Surigao del Norte) [top]