Philippine Fisheries Development Authority (PFDA) and Cooperative Development Authority (CDA) have launched the isDA ON THE GO (iOTG) partnership project in line with the celebration of the Cooperative Month 2021, held at the CDA Grounds, Cubao, Quezon City, on October 14, 2021.
Five CDA-identified cooperatives all over Metro Manila each received one top-of-the-line inverter chest freezer, which will be utilized for the selling of fresh-frozen fishery products under the iOTG initiative.
The beneficiaries of today’s launching were Homenet Producers Cooperative in Quezon City, Limardina Multi-Purpose Cooperative in Valenzuela City, Samahan ng Manininda sa Pamilihang Bayan ng Maypajo Caloocan Credit Cooperative (SAMOCA-CC), and Nuesta Señora del Rosario Credit Cooperative in Malabon City, and DOT ATDA Transport Service Cooperative in Pasay City.
As part of the iOTG expansion plan, 55 more cooperatives from various sectors will soon receive their brand new chest freezers and be part of the partnership project of PFDA and CDA.
During his message, Agriculture Secretary Dr. William D. Dar commended the partnership between PFDA and CDA in penetrating more markets in Metro Manila with high-quality and budget-friendly fishery products. He believes that food security is equal to handling and managing the COVID-19 pandemic, which is what isDA ON THE GO is all about.
“I consider this event today as a very historic event because we are expanding our partnership with CDA in promoting and enhancing cooperative development of the country, particularly in the fisheries sector. With this partnership opportunity between PFDA and CDA, there will now be a new system of delivering and marketing affordable fisheries products and other commodities through empowered cooperatives in Metro Manila,” Secretary Dar said.
In addition, CDA Chairperson Undersecretary Joseph B. Encabo expressed his heartfelt gratitude towards Secretary Dar and PFDA General Manager Atty. Glen A. Pangapalan for this significant partnership. He said this is the start of a new beginning towards helping small, micro, and medium cooperatives to engage and strengthen their capabilities and livelihood programs.
“This is a project born out of a joint initiative of the PFDA and CDA in the unanimous goal of uplifting and empowering cooperatives in the fisheries sector. It is my greatest hope that this fruitful partnership with the Department of Agriculture, through the PFDA, shall further blossom and thrive towards many more collaborative projects,” USec. Encabo expressed.
To formally launch the collaboration project, GM Pangapalan and CDA Chairperson USec. Encabo inked a Memorandum of Understanding that was witnessed by Secretary Dar and CDA Assistant Secretary (ASec.) Dr. Virgilio R. Lazaga.
Subsequently, representatives from the CDA-identified cooperatives signed a contract agreement with PFDA.
Ms. Cecilia Lim of SAMOCA-CC said that being one of the recipients of the iOTG partnership between PFDA and CDA is a great opportunity not just for their cooperative, but also for their customers.
“Kami po ay lubos na nagpapasalamat sa CDA at PFDA dahil ito po ay malaking tulong sa aming kooperatiba lalo na sa amin na nag-uumpisa pa lamang,” Ms. Lim expressed.
On the other hand, Ms. Mirna Magbitang, Founding Chair of Homenet Producers Cooperative, said that they are very thankful to PFDA and CDA because, through this iOTG partnership project, we know that we can help the fisherfolk from the different areas in the Philippines who are having problems with selling their products.
“This is one initiative which we know is towards empowering communities and the members of the cooperatives. More power to CDA and PFDA. We will be looking forward to more partnerships in the future other than iOTG, if possible,” Ms. Magbitang said.
USec. for Agri-Industrialization and for Fisheries Cheryl Marie Natividad-Caballero, Asec. Noel O. Reyes, and Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Director Commodore Eduardo B. Gongona graced today’s activity. Members of the iOTG team of PFDA, including Operations Services Department (OSD) Manager Mr. Eric M. Sims, Regional & Municipal Project Operations Division Chief Ms. Janet T. Manalo, and PFDA – Navotas Fish Port Complex (PFDA-NFPC) Port Manager Ms. Luz P. Ortiz were also present during the launching.
(Mark Angelo N. Perez – Public Information Division with photos from Ali-Jim P. Subang - Public Information Division)