Indigenous communities eyed for dairy farms

Indigenous communities eyed for dairy farms

THE National Dairy Authority (NDA) said it is considering the establishment of more dairy farms in indigenous communities.

In a statement, the NDA said it entered into a partnership with the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) to establish facilities to breed dairy animals.

The development of a pilot facility will begin this year after the signing of a memorandum of agreement, the NDA said in a Viber message.

“Our goal of 5% milk sufficiency by 2028 requires a large volume of milk production. This program allows and welcomes participation. There is room for everyone, including our Indigenous Cultural Communities and Indigenous Peoples (ICCs and IPs),” NDA Administrator Gabriel L. Lagamayo said.

The NDA said that the stock farms will breed animals and process dairy products.

“ICCs and IPs will be (organized) into dairy cooperatives to qualify as recipients of dairy animals,” it added.

Mr. Lagamayo said that under the Dairy Development Project, IPs will be trained in dairy farm management and be supplied with animal feed like corn silage and forage.

“We can provide them livelihood opportunities while furthering our goal of achieving a 5% increase in milk sufficiency through operational expansion,” he added.

He said the facilities will comply with standards set by the NCIP, including respect for sacred ancestral land, environmental norms, and traditional protocols.

“The project will undergo rigorous validation processes to uphold the best interests of ICCs/IPs (to) ensure alignment with the Ancestral Domain Sustainable Development and Protection Plan (ADSDPP) of Indigenous Cultural Communities,” the NDA said.

It added that beginning with a given farm’s second year of operation, the ICCs and IPs will receive 10% of the farm’s dairy output. — Adrian H. Halili