MANKAYAN, Benguet – Department of Agriculture-Cordillera (DA-CAR) and the municipal government conducted a groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of the approved biosecure building facility under the DA’s Integrated National Swine Production Initiatives for Recovery and Expansion Program (INSPIRE) in Nagawaan, Balili, Mankayan, Benguet on December 29, 2023.
The INSPIRE Program is the recovery and repopulation program of the DA for the hog sector to directly respond to the needs of the industry, given the problem on African Swine fever (ASF). For this project, the benefitting organization is the Balili Backyard Hog Fattening Association. The INSPIRE project worth 10 million pesos comes with a biosecure facility inclusive of the perimeter fence, climate-controlled animal house, waste management, basic farm equipment, office with shower area, and initial stocks of piglets including feeds and biologics.
Key personnel from the DA-CAR led by Dr. Arlene Sagayo, Regional Technical Director for Research and Regulations, and the municipal led by Mayor Dario Banario witnessed and supported the groundbreaking ceremony.
In her message, Sagayo, stated that the ceremony is the first page of the association’s success storybook to becoming a role model for the other farmers cooperatives and associations (FCAs) and hog growers around the municipality.
Dr. Leisley Deligen, Assistant Regulatory Division Chief, also shared the reason behind the INSPIRE project of the agency. He gave a brief background on the ASF and how the disease infects piggery farms, emphasizing the importance of biosecurity in the prevention of said disease.
Meanwhile, Regulatory Division Chief Mr. Ruben Dulagan cited the cooperation and unity of members of the Balili Backyard Hog Fattening Association which is a key factor for entrusting them with the big project. He then advised the members to stay united and not to compete, but rather to help the other FCAs in the municipality.
In support, Mayor Dario Banario gladly offered the heavy equipment of the municipality and other services that they can offer to ensure the success of the INSPIRE project in the area.
Members of the Balili Backyard Hog Fattening Association, in response, assured of their continued harmony and commitment to achieve the goal of the project; to observe biosecurity in their facility, and to help other FCAs in their locality who are interested in venturing into swine production. By Tan Dulag