Dairy Business Enhancement
With the Herd build-up program, productivity is the main concern but for dairy farmers to be successful their business must be profitable. Infusing enterprise orientation among dairy producers is the key to sustainability of the program. This can be done by equipping participants in the industry through installation of systems, continuous education and training and infrastructure development. Efforts to gain market access in both commercial and social markets must be pursued. New areas will be prepared as future dairy zones while the existing ones will get corresponding support as well. Milk processing plants, collection centers and processing equipment will be established and installed while existing ones will be upgraded to ensure the flow of the product to the market.
- Expand share of local milk in the liquid milk market. Metro Manila and other city centers are key targets for commercial market expansion. On a parallel effort, mass markets like schools, offices and factories will be developed through existing as well as new distribution networks. With local government partners, the promotion of pockets of self sufficiency in milk will be aggressively pursued at household and village levels.
- Dairy zone installation. The minimum requirement for a dairy zone consists of 100 farmers with three dairy animals each located in adjacent villages and within a 30-kilometer radius of an urban market that has the capacity to absorb its milk production. The farmers own the animals, the primary cooperative operates the collection center, a federation or private entrepreneur operates a processing plant and undertakes marketing. In this process, the NDA identifies local partners prepared to put up the counterpart resources needed to startup a dairy zone.
- Training of dairy managers and entrepreneurs. Intensive training in dairy enterprise management and entrepreneurship is an important element under this program. Prolonged periods of concentration on production somehow failed to stimulate the entrepreneurial drive among dairy producers. Many dairy cooperatives fail due to lack of professional managers. Even qualified persons have failed to succeed in managing dairy businesses due to lack of exposure in the industry.
- Cost-efficient milk handling and processing facilities. A major breakthrough has been achieved in recent years allowing local processors to install facilities without resorting to expensive turn-key plants. This was achieved in several ways: through the support of the Department of Science and Technology in the design and local fabrication of equipment; the diversification of equipment suppliers; and, the development of dairy engineering skills.