In its’ commitment to create more jobs and hone entrepreneurship, the Association of Laguna Food Processors launched last Friday, June 10 2016, the operation of 24 million Shared Service Facility at the Laguna State Polytechnic University in Sta Cruz Laguna. This SSF was granted to CALABARZON FOOD SOLUTIONS HUB in cooperation with the Department of Trade and Industry and the Department of Science and Technology.
ALAFOP, which started way back 2009, initially had 12 micro entrepreneur food manufacturers within the province of Laguna. Now the Association is registered with SEC and is composed 0f 79 active members. Its objective is to develop processed food manufacturers to be a potent source of employment and income.
The launching and blessing of the SSF in LSPU paved the way for students and parents to a better opportunity in establishing a sustainable and profitable livelihood. A program was held at the Activity Center of LSPU coinciding with the launching and blessing of the Facility. As early as 8AM participants and guests started to flock in at the venue site. Different micro entrepreneurs were given the chance to exhibit and showcase their products.
Micro enterprise like Katmon Jam from Cavinti, Gen-Randy’s Sweets from San Pablo, J and J of Pila, Joshua’s Meat Products from Nagcarlan are just some of the many participants who exhibited their products. The program was hosted by Mr. Rhoniel Vibora and with him is Ms. G. Gallardo.
After the registration and arrival of guests, His Holiness Rev. Buenaventura Famadico, Bishop Diocese of San Pablo, led the blessing of the service facility. People eagerly waited outside as the ribbon was cut symbolizing the formal launching and operation of the facility. It was witnessed by the public who were in great anticipation and hope that this shared facility will help them in becoming successful entrepreneurs someday. Some of the machines housed in this SSF are packaging machine, double chamber packed machine, kettle pasteurizer, juice extractor, blast freezer, and different gas stoves among others.
An opening prayer was recited by various representatives from local micro-entrepreneurs signifying the opening of the program. It was followed by a welcome address by Dr. De Vera, LSPU President. His speech includes brief highlights and history of LSPU, including the different courses being offered in the four campuses. He also boasted the newly-opened Shared Service Facility that would cater to the entrepreneurial needs of the students, parents, as well as its nearby communities. He said that technology innovation is a vital key for the development of our community.
An overview of DTI-SSF program was presented by MS. Marilou Q. Toledo, Regional Director of DTI Region 4A. She said that the Department of Trade and Industry spends around 150 million pesos for the construction and operation of this SSF throughout the country. She also shared the mission and vision of the DTI along with its goals and objectives. One of these objectives is the construction of SSF and to produce world-class and food compliant packaging and labeling.
Director Alexander R. Madrigal of DOST Region 4A was given the honor to introduce one of the two distinguished speakers, Secretary Mario G. Montejo of DOST. Secretary Monetjo highlighted the importance of technological advancement for SME’s and its amplification of locally-owned products. He also mentioned the importance of shifting mindset culture innovation and competitiveness. A suffice time should also be allotted in Food Research and technological advancement according to him.
The next speaker, Secretary Adrian S. Cristobal of DTI, was introduced by USEC Zenaida Malaya, DTI ROG. Secretary Cristobal on the other hand, illustrated the goal of CFOSH and its aim in upgrading the existing products and innovating new ones. He recounted the purpose of these SSF’s are to increase production while maintaining quality and quantity. He also encouraged to continue the strong partnership of DTI and CFOSH.
Mr. Clarke S. Nebrao, Chairman and President of ALAFOP, also highlighted the objective of ALAFOP which is to produce new entrepreneurs from LSPU every year. This is very promising and only shows the solid foundation and co-existence of ALAFOP and LSPU. The crowd was excited as Secretary Cristobal handed the key to the officers of ALAFOP.
One of the highlights of the program was the Press Conference held immediately after. Several questions from the media were brought up and answered. Among such questions were focused on the return of investment (roi) and forecasting. Another question was about how to become a member of ALAFOP. President De Vera signified the importance of linkages between the different agencies of the government for the continuity and success of projects as magnanimous as this and the opportunities this Shared Facilities would create in terms of employment and entrepreneurial undertakings.
The program ended with a festive lunch. It was a huge success for LSPU as it housed a Shared Service Facility. It is a facility intended to hone passion, to create and innovate food products at par with international standards, and to mitigate hunger among the children of Laguna and the community. gfcmagadia