LANDBANK AgriSenso highlights innovation as key to boost livestock industry

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(clockwise from upper left) National Federation of Hog Farmers, Inc. (NFHFI) Chairman Chester Warren Y. Tan; RDF Feed, Livestock & Foods, Inc. (RDF) Founder and CEO Dr. Robert H. Lo; Bureau of Animal Industry – Livestock Research and Development Division (BAI-LRDD) Research and Management Section Head Maria Laarni P. Cerna; and LANDBANK Program Management Department I, Assistant Vice President Edgardo S. Luzano lead the second run of the LANDBANK AgriSenso Virtual Forum, which puts the spotlight on the latest challenges, trends and opportunities in the local livestock industry.

The Land Bank of the Philippines (LANDBANK) gathered key agriculture players who
underscored the importance of adopting science-based approaches and latest technologies
to address the challenges facing livestock raisers and achieve self-sufficiency in meat and
dairy production.

The second run of the LANDBANK AgriSenso Virtual Forum on 30 August 2022 put the
spotlight on the livestock industry and featured National Federation of Hog Farmers, Inc.
(NFHFI) Chairman Chester Warren Y. Tan; RDF Feed, Livestock & Foods, Inc. (RDF)
Founder and CEO Dr. Robert H. Lo; Bureau of Animal Industry – Livestock Research and
Development Division (BAI-LRDD) Research and Management Section Head Maria Laarni
P. Cerna; and LANDBANK Program Management Department I Assistant Vice President
Edgardo S. Luzano.

NFHFI Chairman Tan said that the livestock industry remains resilient despite various
challenges caused by climate change, high production costs, global animal diseases, and
market slowdown. Many pig farmers, for instance, have already succeeded in their re-
population efforts amid threats from the African Swine Fever (ASF) by adopting strict and
globally-accepted biosecurity standards, he shared.


“The challenge is to educate, teach, and get all farmers to commit and accept the new
normal of swine farming. We must learn to live with the virus and protect our farms by
strengthening our biosecurity and facilities,” Chairman Tan said.

RDF Founder and CEO Dr. Lo likewise believes that embracing innovation is key to
overcoming present challenges besetting the livestock industry. He shared innovative
approaches that the RDF adopted to manage the impact of ASF and climate change,
among others.

“The best time to re-populate is now because of the insufficient supply in the market. And
if we re-populate, we need to do it right by applying a science-based approach to increase
production. With bigger farms and good biosecurity, we can achieve this,” said Dr. Lo.
Meanwhile, BAI-LRDD Research and Management Section Head Cerna discussed the
country’s roadmap for the livestock industry, and shared the budgetary requirements to
implement all the programs and projects included in the plan.



LANDBANK Lending Programs

LANDBANK Assistant Vice President Luzano discussed available credit programs for hog
raisers, as well as stakeholders engaged in dairy production, processing, marketing, and
other dairy-based economic activities.

Designed in support of National Government efforts to re-populate and increase local hog
production, LANDBANK is offering the SWINE (Special Window and Interim Support to
Nurture Hog Enterprises) Lending Program to commercial hog raisers registered as
cooperatives or farmers’ associations, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), and large
enterprises or corporations.

As of 31 July 2022, LANDBANK has approved loans totaling P3.2 billion to 25 borrowers
under the SWINE Lending Program, with outstanding loans amounting to P1.8 billion.
To boost the local dairy industry, LANDBANK also provides credit assistance under the
MILK (Masustansiyang Inumin para sa Likas na Kalusugan) Program for qualified
cooperatives or associations, federations, countryside financial institutions (CFIs), SMEs,
and agri-business entities.

A total of P183 million in loans have been approved to seven borrowers under the
LANDBANK MILK Program as of end-July 2022, with outstanding loans of P89.4 million.
The AgriSenso Virtual Forums form part of LANDBANK’s intensified support to the
agriculture sector and addresses the request of customers to learn more about available
credit facilities. Each session focuses on a specific agriculture industry or topic, with
industry experts and players invited to share insights, best practices, and opportunities for
growth.

The next run of the LANDBANK AgriSenso Virtual Forum will be held on 12 September
2022 to discuss the legislated programs for individual farmers jointly implemented by
LANDBANK and the Department of Agriculture (DA).

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