Monday, August 7, 2017

Geo-SAFER Mindanao program launching set in Butuan City

By Venus L. Garcia

BUTUAN CITY, Aug. 7 (PIA) – The Department of Science and Technology - Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology and Development (DOST-PCIEERD)-funded research program entitled “Geo-informatics for the Systematic Assessment of Flood Effects and Risks towards a Resilient Mindanao" (Geo-SAFER Mindanao) will be launched on Tuesday, August 8, 2017 at the LMX Convention Center in this city.

“The event will showcase the new program which aims to continue the detailed flood hazard mapping of Mindanao using the Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) technology,” said Engr. Meriam Santillan, project leader of Geo-SAFER Agusan.

Santillan also said that the activity aims to acknowledge the committed partner agencies and the local government units from different parts in Mindanao. “We encourage them to work with us in building and delivering Geo-informatics-based tools and solutions to enhance flood disaster management and mitigation in this part of the country,” she said.

DOST Sec. Fortunato Dela Pena will give a message during the activity, it was learned.

The Geo-SAFER Mindanao Program intends to continue the Phil-LiDAR 1 Program through the coverage of the remaining flood hazard maps in the country using the LiDAR technology and is implemented by five Higher Educational Institutions in Mindanao.

Accordingly, the said program aims to establish the MinDSET Center (Mindanao Data Science, Engineering and Technology Center), an online facility meant for the collaboration and access of scientific data among stakeholders and end-users of the program. (VLG/PIA-Caraga)


CARAT Expo 2017 scales up for increased productivity in Caraga region

By Venus L. Garcia

BUTUAN CITY, Aug. 7 (PIA) – With an aim to promote, strengthen and mainstream the agri-aqua produce and trade industry in Caraga region, the Butuan City Chamber of Commerce and Industry Foundation, Inc. (BCCCIFI) is all set for this year’s Caraga Agricultural Trade and Marketing Exposition or the CARAT Expo 2017

It will be a 6-day event slated on August 8-13, 2017 to be held here with a theme, “Zoom up Caraga! Responding to challenges in agri-aqua productivity, responsible mining and progressive entrepreneurship.”

Department of Agriculture (DA) Caraga regional director Abel James Monteagudo said during a press conference that they are glad to be part of the CARAT Expo 2017 activities and he hoped to build a continuing strong partnership with the Chamber of Commerce in working together to level up the agriculture industry in the region.

Meanwhile, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) Caraga regional director Juan Albaladejo reassured that the bureau shares an affirmative effort in maximizing its resources in pushing forth the valuable programs and projects in fishery and aquatic field.

“Some 200 lobster cages are now existing in Dinagat Islands,” mentioned Albaladejo.

Programs in Science and Technology (S&T) are also given a boost in the region, underscored Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Caraga regional director Dominga Mallonga. She also said that they are into innovations that work for the environmental management and the Caraga State University has its ongoing research and development undertakings.

A technology for the treatment of household waste is being piloted in Siargao according to Mallonga. Said innovative technology is very useful such that bacteria on wastes will be reduced. “It will definitely help preserve and protect the environment from pollution and degradation,” added Mallonga.

As to disaster risk reduction and management innovation, DOST Caraga will be launching one of the outputs of the Caraga State University during the S&T Week which will be celebrated on the same dates.

As mentioned also by Mallonga, DOST has its harmonized National Science and Technology Agenda which include Reseach and Development (R&D) efforts for food, agri-aqua, among others. They are also pushing the universities to take advantage of the support coming from the department since its budget has increased to address the needs of the region.

“We are encouraging the Higher Education Institutions (HEIs)/State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) to take advantage of the support coming from DOST. They should come up with a research and/or project that is of advantage to the region's environment and sustained progress,” emphasized Mallonga.

Mallonga also said that a state-of-the-art equipment that will help Caraganons in improving and developing the quality of their products will be launched in August 8, 2017, in the city.

“We are in full support to the activities of the Chamber of Commerce. It is really an opportune time because the department will also be holding the Science and Technology Week wherein the advance technologies will be featured in the exhibits," she added.

Meanwhile, BCCCIFI president Roger Ramirez said that trade fair, product exhibit, skills demo and competition, agricultural and aquatic products demo, singing and dance contest, CARAT inspired fashion designing and modeling contest, and the different programs will be held at the Robinsons Place Butuan. Agricultural retailers and wholesalers, food producers, agronomics, agriculturists, farmers, manufacturers, food traders, and exporters will have the opportunity to showcase and demonstrate their produce.

To be highlighted also will be the hosting of the 21st Caraga Business Conference on August 11, 2017, which will be held at the Grand Palace Hotel, this city.

“Apart from this year’s significant activities, it will also be another exciting year in 2018 because Caraga region will be participating and hosting the Mindanao-wide Food Summit in partnership with Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA),” said Ramirez.

Awarding of prizes to the winning individuals and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) skills competition winners, and giving of certificates to the partners and exhibitors will conclude the week-long CARAT Expo 2017. (VLG/PIA-Caraga)


AgSur producers rack up sales at the ‘Buy Caraga by Caraga’ Trade Fair: Balanghai Edition

PROSPERIDAD, Agusan del Sur, Aug. 7 – Five food producers of this province have generated some P655,038.00 sales during the 5-day "Buy Caraga, By Caraga" Trade Fair: Balanghai Edition recently.

The products sold were mangosteen tea, coconut sugar, roasted corn, banana chips and tropical fruit wine.  Of the combined sales, 19 percent were in cash, 41 percent booked orders and 40 percent were under negotiation.

The top-seller was mangosteen tea contributing 77 percent to the total sales; banana chips placed second at 12 percent contribution.

Participating producers include Janicahh Food Products, Buena Palma Corp., Sunrise Corn Coffee, Guapz Snack Food Products and Bundy Wine Products.

The Department of Trade and Industry-Agusan del Sur Provincial Office has been continuously providing technical assistance to this group and the rest of the province’s micro, small and medium enterprise (MSME) sector in the areas of business licensing and other-related registration processing and facilitation, pre-trade fair briefings/reminders, secretariat and coordination support, consultancy and advisory services on product packaging/labeling and trade fair participation.

The “Buy Caraga, By Caraga” is a regional fair done twice each year. As in all other fairs, it allows producers to showcase their new and existing products to a wider market that includes end-users and institutional buyers, get exposure to market and competitors which give them ideas on how to develop further their products and obtain direct feedback from customers through offering free taste for food products.

Customer feedback most often becomes a basis for further product improvement. (DTI-Agusan del Sur/PIA-Agusan del Sur)


DTI conducts briefing on Price Act in AgSur town, sees organization of local price council soon

VERUELA, Agusan del Sur, Aug. 7 - The Department of Trade and Industry Agusan del Sur (DTI-AdS) Provincial Office recently conducted a briefing on the Price Act to the chiefs of offices, some members of the Sangguniang Bayan of the Local Government Unit (LGU) of Veruela, as well as non-government organizations (NGOs).

Those present include possible members to the Veruela Local Price Coordinating Council (LPCC), the executive order of which for its formation is now on its first draft, as reported by the representative of Mayor Myrna Mondejar - Fernand Escaño.

The session was conducted three days before the lifting of the 60-day price freeze, which was imposed as a result of the declaration of martial law. The Price Act or Republic Act 7581 provides that even if martial law will be extended, the price freeze which was imposed for basic necessities starting the day martial law was declared last May 23, 2017, will only be limited to 60 days.

During the briefing, Cerila Inson of the DTI-AdS Consumer Protection Unit mentioned that under this Law, the state has to ensure the availability of basic necessities and prime commodities at reasonable prices at all times without denying the legitimate business a fair return on investment.

Implementing agencies like DTI, Department of Agriculture, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, and the Department of Health have to do their respective functions to monitor prices, analyze trends, ensure fair business, stability of prices and access to basic necessities even and especially during calamities, emergencies, and state of rebellion and/or during Martial Law.

In her message, DTI OIC-Provincial Director Brenda Corvera also updated LGU-Veruela of the other programs of the DTI.  She expressed her thanks upon learning that finally, LGU Veruela will be forming its LPCC soon.  Once established, this would bring the province’s compliance in terms of having all LGUs with a working LPCC at around 86 percent.  (DTI-Agusan del Sur/PIA-Agusan del Sur)