A partnership between the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) and Pilmico Foods Corporation (Pilmico), the integrated agribusiness and food company of Aboitiz Equity Ventures, Inc. (AEV), will attempt to save as many as 1,200 Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries (ARBs) from poverty.
To be specific, these ARBS, who are all women, will be given starter kits for bakery training, egg layering and poultry or broiler production, hog fattening, and other similar livestock rearing businesses through the newly signed memorandum of agreement (MOA) between Pilmico and DAR.
“Many economies are collapsing and the last frontier of [our] economy of course, is no other than agriculture. We go back to the basics: that our survival defense is on the producer of food, and these are the farmers,” said DAR Secretary John Castriciones.
Under the initiative, which will be funded by DAR, Pilmico will provide technical assistance to ARBs by helping them identify quality suppliers and providing them with training on how to effectively manage their farms.
This is to make sure the ARBs will be able to make the most out of the livelihood kits that they will receive from DAR, Pilmico said.
“We are living in unprecedented times, when we have seen the havoc that a global pandemic can wreak on the livelihoods of many people. This makes the meaning behind this initiative with DAR much more powerful, and the timing could not be better. We, in Pilmico, are excited to be involved in this project and commit to being your reliable partner in ensuring food security for Filipino families,” said Pilmico President and Chief Executive Officer Tristan Aboitiz.
Pilmico and DAR’s partnership started in 2017 when the former launched a livelihood distribution project for the ARB organizations (ARBOs).
Since then, the partnership has provided 99 livelihood kits and technical trainings that helped create sustainable livelihood and accessible income opportunities for beneficiaries in South Cotabato, Surigao del Norte, Camarines Sur, Capiz, Compostela Valley, Pampanga, Zamboanga del Sur, Bohol, Negros Oriental, Nueva Ecija, and Pangasinan.
The project’s targets were met and exceeded, and the impactful results led to the initiative being continued and eventually expanded.