Land Bank allocates P50B for food supply chain program
By Carina L. Cayon
Davao City (20 November) -- The Land Bank of the Philippines has allocated P50 billion fund to support the government's Food Supply Chain program in a bid to promote food security and increase agricultural productivity and income of the farmers.
LBP president and CEO Gilda Pico bared this during yesterday's third leg of a series of island-based food chain summits held at the Apo View Hotel, this city.
Pico said the Food Supply Chain program, a synergy program of the Department of Agriculture, Department of Finance and Land Bank, provides financial and technical support along the value-added chain of a commodity or industry.
The LBP president told the local media in a press conference here that the P50 billion commitment from the bank "is an initial funding that could increase incase there's demand."
She explained that the allocation would particularly support the financial requirements for agricultural industry such as crop, livestock and fishery production, and for working capital and acquisition of processing and other fixed assets.
Pico informed that the summit has convened farmer-producers, service providers and anchor firm-processors from regions 10, 11 and 12. She said the key players for this program were hoped to discuss, negotiate and come out with business commitments, and be able to forge partnerships for the food chain supply market.
LBP finance vice-president Joselito Gutierrez disclosed that already nine program partnerships have been forged in memorandum of understanding during a recent launch in Manila where majority of the ventures came from Mindanao.
Gutierrez informed that among the anchor firms that were able to engage in the program were Anakciano, Inc., Agumil Phils., Inc., Sagrex Foods, Inc. and Sarphil Employees Cooperative (SEMCO).
He said Anakciano and SEMCO are into the livestock industry, while Agumil is involved in the palm oil production. Sagrex, meanwhile, has the tuna and banana (cardava) business.
Pico hoped that more partners will be encouraged and be interested to participate in the program "so that we could provide better opportunities for people in the rural areas."
She further said that the series of summits were expected to "further fortify our strategies in effectively implementing the Food Supply Chain Program."
The first two summits were held at Lipa, Batangas and Bohol, and the last one would be conducted in Pampanga this month, Pico stated. (PIA-XI) [top]