After virtually visiting Catanduanes for its first episode in 2021, the National Academy of Science and Technology, Philippines (NAST PHL) in partnership with the Department of Science and Technology Region-VI and Philippine Science and Technology Center – Guimaras, will conduct the second episode of ScienTeach on 12 April 2021 at 9:00 AM with a live broadcast on the NAST PHL social media accounts. The virtual symposium is open for all junior and senior high school students from the region.
For the second episode, the resource speakers of the virtual symposium are National Scientist Ernesto O. Domingo, Academician Carmencita D. Padilla, and Academician
Rody G. Sy. Dr. Jaime Alfonso A. Aherrera, 2020 Outstanding Young Scientist, will serve as Master of Ceremonies and Moderator.
The event will also be participated by NAST PHL President, Academician Rhodora V. Azanza, National Scientist Raul V. Fabella, and DOST-VI Regional Director, Engr. Rowen R. Gelonga.
Before the pandemic, the Symposium for the Youth with NAST Scientists was held in various provinces of the country in partnership with the DOST Regional Offices. Starting last year, the symposium went virtual as an adaptive effort of NAST PHL to continue serving its stakeholders. ScienTeach is a collection of episodes that highlights varying topics featuring NAST Members and its awardees who are accomplished in their respective fields. It utilizes online platforms while obtaining the objectives of the traditional lecture series, which are to: 1) promote science and technology, 2) promote the NAST members and its awardees by bringing them closer to the youth, and 3) inspire and encourage the students to pursue a career in science.
NAST PHL is an attached agency of the DOST and serves as the country’s premier recognition and advisory body on Science and Technology.
Lagonglong abaca farmers receive tech assistance from DOST-X
Although the Bicol region, specifically the province of Catanduanes, remains as the top producer of abaca or Manila hemp with 52,493 hectares devoted to it, Lagonglong, Misamis Oriental is aspiring to capitalize on the huge market potential of abaca that has both domestic and international demand.
To support the Lagonglong abaca farmers’ dream, the Department of Science and Technology – Region XI (DOST-X) recently turned over a check amounting to Php 1.3 million to the Local Government Unit of Lagonglong (LGU-Lagonglong) in Misamis Oriental on April 14, 2021, via an online conference, for a joint abaca processing project.
The funds will be used for science and technology interventions that will benefit the Abaca Fiber Processing to empower the Agro Forestry Farmers Association of Sitio Kalamansi (AFFASKA), Banglay Abulan Farmers Association (BAFA), and the Roa-Roa Farmers Association (ROFA).
Lagonglong has approximately 70 hectares of abaca plantation that amounts to 74,690 kilograms of fiber per year. The produce is mostly from endemic abaca within the area. With the DOST-X assistance, the farmers are expected to shift to cultivating good abaca planting materials and manage the farm well that can increase the amount of abaca produce to up to four times.
LGU-Lagonglong and DOST-X aim to bridge the gap in abaca processing and mechanize the methods to produce higher quality abaca at a much faster rate. This will eventually generate higher income for the farmers.
Through the project, DOST-X will provide Abaca Decorticating Machines to each farmer group for abaca processing, and 3,000 pieces of abaca planting materials to help cultivate the endemic abaca for a higher yield. LGU-Lagonglong, on the other hand, will provide the building that will house the processing activity.
The Abaca Decorticating Machines will help the farmers process more kilograms of abaca fibers for five times a week.
With the introduction of the technology to the farmers’ associations, it is expected that they can now expand their production as well as their market and exploit the big potential of abaca.
Commercially, abaca fiber is turned into pulp and processed into specialty papers, high-quality writing paper, currency notes, tea and coffee bags, sausage casing paper, vacuum bags, and cigarette filter papers, among others.
Furthermore, modern technology has also paved the way for the possible “soft applications” of abaca that can be adopted by the automotive industry as substitute for glass fibers in multiple automotive parts and can be used as a filling material for bolster and interior trim parts.
So, as the Lagonglong abaca farmers look beyond to a better future, the DOST-X continues to find more ways of helping similar communities create added livelihood opportunities, which is part of one of the flagship programs of the DOST; the Community Empowerment through Science and Technology (CEST) program. The program specifically targets low-income communities but with great potentials in rural areas through five entry points, namely: health and nutrition, livelihood and enterprise development, disaster risk reduction management and climate change adaptation, sanitation and environmental protection and conservation, and education. (Grazelle Dela Cruz, DOST-X) For more information, please contact: Julie Anne H. Baculio, Science Research Specialist I (firstname.lastname@example.org, 0917-709-3706)The Department of Science and Technology – Region 10 (DOST 10) envisions to be an effective and competent catalyst of inclusive development by providing world-class and innovative Science & Technology services in Region 10.
Contact: Ms. Julie Anne H. Baculio, Science Research Specialist I (email@example.com, 0917-709-3706) #
Kinoguitan fruit farmers, mostly women, get help through DOST’s community empowerment program
Seventeen farmers, mostly women, of the Kinoguitan Food Processors Producers Cooperative (KFPPC) recently became the beneficiaries of the fruit value-adding project spearheaded by the Department of Science and Technology Region X (DOST-X) and the local government unit of Kinoguitan in Misamis Oriental.
The project is being implemented under the DOST-X’s Community Empowerment through Science and Technology (CEST) program that aims to empower communities through five different key entry points: livelihood, health, environment, disaster risk reduction and management, and education.
The DOST-X turned over a check amounting to P1.6 million to the local government unit of Kinoguitan on 14 April 14 2021, via an online conference to empower the fruit farmers in the municipality. The LGU-Kinoguitan and DOST-X partnership was sealed to provide appropriate technologies to process the fruit produce into high-value products that will give the farmers a higher financial return than just selling the fresh fruits.
Incidentally, Kinoguitan is abundant in tropical fruits such as mango, jackfruit, banana, durian, and more. However, the Municipal Agriculture Office reported that 470 out of 1,253 metric tons of fruit are left unsold and wasted during peak fruiting seasons.
To minimize the waste and convert the fruits to other food products, the project aims to acquire a Vacuum Fryer and a Food Dehydrator that can be used to process the farmers’ harvest.
Vacuum Fryer can be used for deep-fat frying and is designed to fry the fruits under reduced pressure, thus retaining their natural color and flavor. The equipment will make the fruits crunchier in texture. On the other hand, the Food Dehydrator preserves the fruits by removing the moisture content at high temperatures, thus minimizing spoilage.
The fruit processing or production area will be funded by the LGU-Kinoguitan, while the supply of raw materials and other kitchen tools will be from the farmer-beneficiaries.
The online fund turn-over signals the strengthening of the partnership and linkage between the stakeholders that is seen to empower fourth to sixth-class communities in the province of Misamis Oriental.
There are other notable projects being implemented by DOST-X that aim to empower more communities in the region and those who wish to avail of the different services of the DOST can get in touch with DOST-X through Facebook or email at firstname.lastname@example.org and contact Julie Anne H. Baculio, Science Research Specialist I (email@example.com, 0917-709-3706) (Grazelle Dela Cruz, DOST-X)