Bryan John Dizon, 38, worked for various companies in the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) and banking industries prior to his involvement in poultry farming.
Dizon was first exposed to chickens when his family members used to raise them for cockfighting. As a result of this exposure, he gained an interest in chickens that grew over time.
In 2013, while on vacation in Palawan, Dizon rediscovered his love of chickens, but this time for their meat and eggs. A year after that trip, Dizon purchased a poultry farm for commercial use.
To broaden his knowledge, Dizon took an intensive training program in animal husbandry, specifically on poultry production and management, at the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) in 2014.
“In school, I was able to re-learn the principles of chicken raising coupled with the recent technologies and applications. I also met several mentors who can help establish a successful business in broiler chicken farming.”
Tired of working in the corporate world, Dizon resigned from his job in the city, and settled in Puerto Princesa, Palawan with his family in 2015. Dizon began producing over 15,000 broiler chickens, which were then supplied to a consolidator.
Javenri Harvest Farm sits on three hectares of land in Barangay Santa Cruz, Puerto Princesa, Palawan. One hectare of this land is dedicated to livestock such as pigs, chickens, and ducks, 5000 square meters area to vegetables, and the rest to coffee and cacao orchards.
It is a certified learning site of the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) and an accredited farm school of Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) that offers Organic Agriculture Production courses. It is also an accredited agritourism site of the Department of Tourism (DOT).
Growing food in harmony with nature
With the goal of producing healthy and chemical-free food for the family, Dizon chose to take the natural route.
“There were a lot of tempting offers from consultants to use chemical fertilizers and foliar sprays made from unknown (likely unnatural) ingredients that should or at least promise [better crop] yield. But I stayed adamant to keep everything all-natural.”
Javenri Harvest Farm primarily produces chicken meat and eggs from naturally-raised chickens and ducks. In order to diversify its activities, the farm rears 10 black pigs, three sheep, two goats, and cattle.
The farm is also planted with high-value crops like herbs (cilantro, rosemary, Thai and sweet basil, oregano) that are mostly supplied to hotels and restaurants in Puerto Princesa, El Nido, and San Vicente, Palawan. They also cultivate veggies like lettuce, arugula, spinach, eggplants, while for fruits, they have banana, papaya, passion fruit, and mulberry plants.
Javenri Harvest Farms tends to over 500 chickens that are composed of Rhode Island Red, Plymouth Rock, Australorp, and some hybrids intended for egg production. There are about 50 heads of Itik Pinas that grow on-site as well.
Chickens are fed twice a day with 20 percent commercial feed as a source of micronutrients, while other sources include mombasa, napier, mulberry leaves, malunggay, and madre de agua.
Dizon and his team collect animal manure for the crops’ fertilizer every week, while they also spray Effective Microorganism Activated Solution (EMAS) to neutralize odor around the animal pens. To keep the chicken coop free from stinky smell and bugs, they make use of citronella and lemongrass for bedding.
The farm initially grew food for personal consumption, but later started to sell its output when the farm started producing more than what the family could consume.
Apart from the farm’s active use for crop and animal production, Javenri Harvest Farm thrives as an accredited learning venue and tourism destination.
In a month, Javenri Harvest Farm can earn at least P20,000 from the produce and another P100,000 from the training programs.
What encapsulates this corporate worker-turned-farmer’s journey is the importance of mastering the craft. He did not enter the industry unprepared. Armed with the knowledge he learned from school and a heart that’s willing, Dizon continuously finds success and progress in farming.
Photos courtesy of Javenri Harvest Farm’s Facebook page
For more information, visit Javenri Harvest Farm