ENTERPRISE SUBPROJECT. The minivan and one-unit chocolate processing building in Panabo City, Davao del Norte, a project of the Department of Agriculture-Philippine Rural Development Project (DA-PRDP), was turned over to Rehoboth Agriculture Cooperative on June 29, 2022. The project aims to boost the cacao industry in Davao del Norte. (Photo from DA-PRDP)

DAVAO CITY – Three big-ticket subprojects of the Department of Agriculture-Philippine Rural Development Project (DA-PRDP) worth PHP337.5 million were turned over to the province of Davao del Norte over the weekend.

In a statement Saturday, DA-PRDP said the projects were officially handed over to the municipalities of New Corella, Kapalong, and Rehoboth Agriculture Cooperative (RACO) in Panabo City.

The first subproject turned over was the 15.354-kilometer “Rehabilitation of Poblacion – Limbaan -Suawon – Macgum farm-to-market (FMR) with two bridges” worth PHP209 million.

The “Rehabilitation of Capungagan -Boundary San Miguel Farm Market Road” subproject was also transferred to the Municipality of Kapalong.

The 10.6-kilometer FMR road has provided access to barangay roads going to Florida, Mabantao in Kapalong town and Linao, Sawata in the Municipality of San Isidro and New Loon in the Municipality of Asuncion.

The subproject which is worth PHP108 million will support the value chain of existing commodities in the area such as cacao, cardava banana (saba in the Philippines), and coconut.

It would also address the lack of access road from the farm to market, long travel time, and high rate of post-harvest losses.

Meanwhile, one enterprise subproject was also inaugurated – the “Chocolate Processing” which was turned over to RACO in Panabo City.

The said subproject aims to boost the cacao industry not just in Panabo City but the entire Davao del Norte.

“RACO is looking forward to producing more 100 percent dark chocolate,” the statement added.

DA-PRDP Support Office Mindanao Director Abel James Monteagudo said in his message that the enterprise subproject of RACO is a blessing to cacao farmers in the province.

He added that the DA-PRDP provided them with supplies and material, processing equipment and machinery, a minivan, and one unit chocolate processing building.

The subproject worth PHP20 million will support the 150 beneficiaries by increasing their income and ensuring that the cooperative has a sure market for their chocolate products.

“Through this support, they can now upscale their existing chocolate production by the use of the said facilities and equipment since they can meet the quality and standard set by their buyers,” Monteagudo added. (PNA)