Samar dried fish makers receive support from DA
CATBALOGAN CITY —Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol has declared Catbalogan City in Samar as Eastern Visayas’ dried fish champion area and as such, he desires that all necessary interventions be made available to the fisherfolks and their families.
This was part of Pinol’s commitment in the almost two-hour sortie at Catbalogan City, Samar at the Common Service Facility for Fish Processing at Barangay Payao, Catbalogan City, Samar where he also met with the officers of the Asosasyon han mga Paragbulad ha Catbalogan (APCAT) headed by its President Mr. Diosdado A. Carisma and Mr. Lorenzo Añez, Barangay Captain of Barangay Payao.
He challenged them to modernize dried fish production and processing so that these could be made available, not only in Catbalogan City or within the country, but also abroad, such as in the United States, where products from the Philippines are in great demand.
The Samar Provincial Government through Governor Sharee Ann Tan established this facility to support the production of dried fish, smoked fish and vacuum-packed ma-rinated milkfish with APCAT as its beneficiary. Assisting the Provincial Government of Samar are the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) at the regional and provincial levels, the Department of Agriculture, and the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) which made possible the procurement of a solar dryer with the P500,000.00 grant.
In his very first Biyaheng Bukid to the region, Piñol met with various farmers and fisherfolks group from Samar, together with Governor Tan, who expressed their desire for a facility to maximize their fish production and processing even during rainy season or in times of typhoons.
At the same time he asked the Provincial government of Samar, represented by Provincial Administrator Anita R. Taran, to stop illegal fishing in the coastal waters of Samar;
Fisherfolks can avail of loans to build Norwegian model fish cagesworth P450,000.00each, aside from feeds and fingerlings.
Undersecretary for Fisheries and BFAR National Director Commodore Eduardo B. Gongona and BFAR 8 Regional Director Juan Albaladejo were also direc-ted to bring them on a learning experience to the fishcages at Malang, Davao City to observe how these are managed by the various fishery organizations and the local government unit.
Piñol said these commitments show the government’s sincere desire to at least help improve the quality of life of the marginalized sector of farmers, fisherfolks and their families specially since they themselves identified these projects.
"This is also a challenge to everyone in as much as we need to improve our food production and match it with our growing population growth," he added.