Women beneficiaries of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) in Sitio Masasa, Brgy. San Juan, Tingloy, Batangas underwent a training on coconut-based products processing aimed at helping them establish their own community enterprise, held on 17-18 May 2022.
The women beneficiaries were trained on processing of coconut jam, macapuno/buko pastillas, buko yema, macapuno/buko in a jar, and buko juice. The processing technologies used and transferred to the beneficiaries were developed by the Institute of Food Science and Technology (IFST) of the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB). Dr. Florencio C. Reginio, Jr. (Assistant Professor 7) and Prince Joseph V. Gaban (Science Research Specialist I), both from IFST-UPLB served as the resource speakers during the training.
An awareness-seminar on Basic Food Hygiene and current Good Manufacturing Practices was also integrated in the training to ensure the implementation of food safety systems and to safeguard that every product they produce conforms to standards. Participants had a hands-on activity on processing each product following strict compliance to food safety standards. The training upskilled the women beneficiaries and provided them with added knowledge advantageous to their pursuit of establishing their community enterprise.
Considering the booming tourism industry in Sitio Masasa’s beach, popularized by the public since 2017, the initiative to offer local delicacies and tourism products is an attempt to spur socioeconomic opportunities in the community. As such, one of the interventions eyed for Tingloy is the establishment of a community enterprise focused on processing of local delicacies and products aimed at serving the needs of the tourism industry in the area.
Being a geographically isolated and disadvantaged area (GIDA), Tingloy was identified as one of the sites for the implementation of the Community Empowerment thru Science and Technology (CEST) program of DOST-CALABARZON. CEST is a national program composed of a package of DOST interventions focused on improving the lives of various rural communities in health and nutrition, livelihood and economic development, education, sanitation, and disaster risk reduction and management. Through the CEST intervention, rural communities are expected to be more progressive, more resilient, and growth oriented. As such, one of the interventions eyed for Tingloy is the establishment of a community enterprise focused on processing of local delicacies and tourism products.