One local rice mill and two producers’ associations recently received financial assistance from the Department of Science and Technology Regional Office I (DOST-I) to help them improve their productivity and operations through the Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program or SETUP, one of the flagship programs of the department.
JC Laroco Rice Mill, a firm located at Lloren, Tubao, La union and owned by Jennifer C. Laroco, recently graduated from the initial DOST-SETUP assistance awarded in 2016 and is now on the second phase of the program. The firm received funding worth Php 2.95M that will allow them to adopt IFR Technology and become the supplier for the second district of La Union.
On the other hand, San Antonio Rice Wine Production Association (SARWPA) and the Balecbec Cassava Producers Association (BaCPA), a recognized associations of Naguilian, La Union, received fund assistance under the DOST Community-Based Program (CBP) Grants-In-Aid (GIA).
SARWPA, an association that produces rice wine or tapey in the vernacular was granted assistance worth Php 60,850.00 for the acquisition of auto siphon, stainless steel tanks and working table to comply with food safety standards.
BaCPA, an association that produces cassava chips was granted Php 123,000.00 for the improvement of the design of packaging and labeling and for the acquisition of a multi-function vegetable slicer and stainless steel working tables that also comply with food safety standards.
During the handing over of the cheques, Dr. Armando Q. Ganal, DOST-I regional director, discussed the contents of the Memorandum of Agreement to the proponents as witnessed by the project staffs of the Provincial S&T Center-La Union (PSTC-LU).
The DOST SETUP is a strategy that encourages and assists micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to adopt technological innovations that will improve their products, services, operations and increase their productivity and market competitiveness.
The DOST-CBP, on the other hand, empowers associations and cooperatives to sustain and improve their productive undertakings by identifying abundant commodities that have great potential for production or manufacturing intended to create livelihood and enhance the standard of living of the community.