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Friday, 15 December 2023

Cassava farmers upscale on good manufacturing practices, food safety

SURIGAO CITY, Surigao del Norte, The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Surigao del Norte recently conducted a significant event that set to transform the local cassava processing industry. 

The Soksokon Farmers Association (SOFAAS) of Barangay Camam-oman, Gigaquit town took a bold step toward ensuring that their cassava products meet the highest standards of quality and safety. This initiative focused on good manufacturing practices (GMP) and food safety, with the aim of raising the bar for cassava products' safety and quality.

The face-to-face training was led by resource persons from the Philippine Root Crops and Training Center (PhilRootCrops). Mary Rose Maniego, science research assistant of PhilRootcrops, with her expertise in food safety and GMP, set the stage for the capacity building activity on cassava processing. 

The training highlighted the Republic Act No. 10611, also known as the “Food Safety Act of 2013,” emphasized that neglecting the rules and regulations of the act could lead to severe penalties, fines, and even imprisonment.

Maniego also discussed the importance of GMP as a system to ensure consistent production and quality control.

“By adhering to GMP, the association will not only guarantee customer safety and satisfaction but also protect employees, uphold legal requirements and foster good business practices in the workplace,” he added.

The training was not just about the theory, for the participants had the unique opportunity to witness food processing demonstrations and were engaged in hands-on practical activities, all under the expert guidance of the subject experts. These real-world applications of their newly acquired skills solidified their knowledge, ultimately leading to a more secure and efficient cassava processing industry in Gigaquit. This intervention signaled a commitment to the future, emphasizing product safety and consumer confidence as the key to success.

DOST-Surigao del Norte tirelessly provided quality science and technology services and interventions as support mechanisms to the people of Surigao del Norte. (DOST-SDN/PIA-Surigao del Norte)