The potential of the dairy industry in the country is as pure and healthy as milk.

This was affirmed in the 21st Dairy Congress and Expo on May 23-25, 2018 in Tagbilaran City, Bohol where Cagayan and Isabela provinces were recognized as among the Dairy Zones of the Philippines.

Aptly themed “Moving towards milk sufficiency”, the congress provided opportunities for learning, sharing and networking through farm tour, product exhibits and plenary sessions which focused on strategies to boost milk production such as forage and pasture development, feed management, mechanization, research and development, marketing and financing.

In her message, National Dairy Authority (NDA) Administrator Marilyn Mabale shared the country’s vision to increase the sufficiency level of milk production from 1% to 20% by 2022. This, according to her, may be done through strong public-private partnerships in the distribution and management of dairy stocks.

Administrator Mabale also recognized the top regions in terms of animal population, among which is Region 02.  Moreover, the province of Cagayan was cited as one of the provinces with the highest buffalo population and, together with the province of Isabela, was acknowledged as a Dairy Zone of the Philippines.

Senator Cynthia Villar, through her representative, Atty. Reggie Tamana, expressed full support to the dairy sector and assured the stakeholders that as Chairman of the Senate’s Committee on Agriculture, she will propose legislations that will directly impact on the dairy farmers, such as the institutionalization of a nationwide Milk Feeding Program and a higher budget for livestock development.

During the Congress, the participants had the opportunity to visit the Ubay Bohol Stock Farm, an integrated dairy enterprise equipped with high-end facilities from the Philippine Carabao Center.

DTI – Region 02 Director Ruben Diciano and Industry Development Division Chief Mary Ann Dy, were among over 600 Congress delegates.  Notably, they were able to establish linkage with Genetic Development New Zealand Ltd. and the Government of Canada for the development of the dairy sector in Cagayan Valley region.