|Dwarf papaya trees are also grown at the food garden and are fertilized by chicken manure. The fruits are sold at the town market. - All MWBuzzpics by AP HERNANDEZ|
By ALFREDO P HERNANDEZ
A GROUP of 76 families at Baranggay Gawad Kalinga on the outskirts of Mambulao are now benefiting from a poultry project put up by a graduate of the Jose Panganiban High School.
The contract growing project involving more than 5,000 chickens per growing cycle was put up by businessman-rural banker Roberto V Torres in February 2010 to provide the GK residents additional source of income.
After completing the poultry sheds that took for quite sometime,
the project began production of the 28-day chicken the following August, using day-ld chicks.
The following month, the project harvested about 5,130 heads of 1.5kg chicken out of the 5,400 day-old chicks started a month ago.
During the first month-long growing cycle, 270 fowls were lost. Since the beginning of production, the project suffered an average 5% mortality rate.
The chickens were bought at Php16 per kilo by fresh chicken company Bounty Fresh.
Bsed in Talisay, Camarines Norte, Bountry Fresh supplies fresh and frozen chicken to supermarkets, hotels and restaurants around Bicol region.
The company is owned by Torres, who also owns the Rural Bank of Jose Panganiban, the Rural Bank of San Vicente and the RVT Hardware in Daet.
Torres, 52, a member of the JPHS Alumni Association, is also the project director of Ancop-Gawad Kalinga for Camarines Norte.
From left: Poultry farm manager Emerson Jeres, 25, GK Kapitbahayan president Eric Mesa, 41, and second year high school student Gladel Bordonada, 14.
He donated the property where the GK village now stands.
Poultry farm manager Emerson Jerez, 25, said the RBJP extended a loan of close to Php200,000 to the GK families to start the project.
The loan was to be repaid over two years from profits earned, says Jeres, who, incidentally, is employed by RBJP as one of its managers.
Under the contract-growing arrangement, Bounty Fresh will supply day-old chicks and veterinary products at discounted prices, as well as free services of a veterinarian.
The company also supplies the project with feeds and other materials, also at discounted prices.
Last April, the project was due to harvest another batch of 5,000 plus 28-day chickens, causing the families to rejoice.
The reason: With this harvest, they would now be able to pay their bank loan in full.
Jeres said that every harvest, the project earned an average of of Php7,000, that is after deducting the operating expenses and the loan amortization.
With the full-payment of the bank loan, the families would have more income and funds every after harvest.
A portion of the income would go to the communal funds, such as the GK Kapitbahayan funds, the funds for the maintenance of the GK facilities and repairs of the housing units and school funds for the village’s school children.
The project employs 10 workers from the village.
|The GK food garden... harvest was made a few days ago and was sold in the town market.|
Alongside poultry production, the families also put up vegetable and papaya gardens next to the poultry farm, using chicken wastes as fertilizer.
The food garden produces a fast-growing pechay variety, string beans and dwarf papaya variety.
Jeres said that the food garden projects have made all the members of the GK families busy.
The harvests are being sold at the town market and nearby baranggay flea market.
Eric Mesa, 41, who is the GK Kapitbahayan president, told this writer that their poultry operations so far were “satisfactory”.
|The cut-flower garden being worked by the GK mothers as additional source of income.|
|Mrs Jeres, one of the mothers engaged in cut-flower production, explaining their need for additional capital to buy more flower pots so they could meet their orders from funeral homes and other institutional users. --|
“It provided employment for a number of family members and has encouraged others to look for jobs at the town or elsewhere.”
Mesa said that the GK mothers are also growing flowers for cut-flower production and ornamental plants, which they supply to funeral homes in Mambulao and neighboring towns of Paracale and Labo.