OCCIDENTAL MINDORO, July 16, 2021 – Twenty-three Ratagnon-Mangyan cassava producers of Magsaysay, Occidental Mindoro received a Php 220,000-worth of cassava granulator from the Department of Agriculture – Special Area for Agricultural Development (DA-SAAD) Program on July 9.
The farmers are members of the Calachuchi Indigenous Farmers Association (CIFA), who cultivate an estimated area of 20 hectares (ha) for cassava in Sitio Alibog, Brgy. Alibog.
SAAD provided the machinery to help farmers for faster, easier, and finer granulation of the cassava.
Cassava tubers take 10 months to one year to harvest. These are then chipped and solar dried for two to three days before delivery to assemblers or buyers.
It is a primary ingredient in producing animal feeds and other products such as plywood and starch. Chipped cassava sells from Php 8-8.50 per kilogram (kg).
“Matagal na naming gustong magkaroon ng granulator dahil binababa pa namin sa bayan ang aming balinghoy para matadtad. Ngayon na nabigyan na kami [ng granulator], hindi na naming kailangang bumaba sa bayan at mas madali kaming makakabenta,” said Anselmo Palomo, Vice Chairman of CIFA.[We have always wanted to have our own granulator because we have to bring our harvest to the town proper for our cassava to be granulated. Now that we have received our own granulator, we do not need to travel to town and it will be easier for us to sell our product.]
The association used to pay Php 250 per day as rent for the cassava granulator in the town proper.
The group became a SAAD beneficiary in 2020 and received five sets of farm implements (plow and harrow), 27 sets of farm tools (shovel, hoe, rake, piko, spading fork, sprinkler, and wheelbarrow), five (5) caraheifer, and a grass cutter.
Also, CIFA got 500,000 pieces of Lakas 1 Golden Yellow variety of cassava cuttings in 2021. In total, the interventions cost Php 2,465,400.
Magsaysay Mayor Cesar M. Tria and the Municipal Agriculture Office (MAO) assisted with the awarding of the granulator.
The MAO will assist the farmers with the proper handling and storage of the granulator. ###
Writer: Dianne Francis S. Sy, SAAD Information Officer I
Source: Vilmar J. Robes, SAAD Area Coordinator – Magsaysay