Central Mindanao University together with Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) and iFresh signed a Memorandum of Agreement on Free-Range Chicken Research, Breeding and Training Center under the New Harmonizing Opportunities for People Empowerment (New HOPE) Program on February 18, 2020.
This joint project, which is also the first in Mindanao, aims to make Central Mindanao University a research center for chickens. “I’m bringing this project to CMU because we’d like to start something new,” says Sec. Emmanuel “Manny” F. Piñol, former Department of Agriculture Secretary and Chairman of Mindanao Development Authority. Sec. Piñol brought along with him his personal collection of several chicken breeds, and his very own bred “Manok Pinoy,” as his donation to the soon-to-rise research center.
He highly encouraged everyone, especially the students, to start experimenting and maybe come up with their own chicken breeds. He emphasized on the importance of producing a distinct chicken breed as it will not only have an impact on the production and commercialization of the chickens through providing consistency in color, size of the body, and how many eggs will it lay, but it will also be easier to address challenges health-wise. He also reminded everyone to follow strict security measures to protect the live chickens.
“Our purpose of establishing this chicken ‘haven’ is to put up a research center. We might consider the establishment of a gene bank for Philippine chickens so we will have a consistency in our production… Let’s set up a learning center, let’s set up a propagation center of the chicken, so that when the time comes, every rural family in Mindanao will have the opportunity of raising chickens not only for their food supply but a part of a livelihood program,” he added.
The challenge now for the beneficiary is how to successfully raise the chickens and, at the same time meet the demands of the people when it comes to production as this project aspires to go not just nationwide, but worldwide as well.
CMU President, Dr. Jesus Antonio G. Derije, is optimistic that the project will go well with the pool of experts present in the University. “I am positive that with the presence of our Veterinarians and Animal Science students, I am very sure that this will be a venue to generate income in research and extension undertakings positively,” he said. With a full heart, he extended his gratitude to his partners as he claimed that it is indeed a blessing for CMU to be chosen for this project.
Atty. Jose Joel P. Doromal, the Mayor of the Municipality of Maramag, also hopes that this project will be the start of gearing towards addressing the problems of the community. He guarantees that he will give his utmost support, and he aspires that in the future, this will uplift the lives of the many through providing opportunities for people living in nearby communities.
iFresh Operations and Finance Controller, Noelyn F. Quimque, extended her support and prayers to the success of this project and left three words for their partner agencies: Passion, Compassion, and Opportunity. “You should learn every day in your lives; this is an opportunity for you, learn it, love it. You have vast lands to cultivate, a vast amount of knowledge here in the University, so love it, and we came here for this opportunity,” she said.
The event was attended by the University President, Dr. Jesus Antonio G. Derije, Sec. Emmanuel “Manny” F. Piñol, Noelyn F. Quimque, and Atty. Jose Joel P. Doromal, with the members of the Administrative Council, students of the University, and guests as witnesses. The groundbreaking ceremony and ceremonial tree planting commenced right after the signing of the memorandum of agreement. (ACDoña)