Local Agribusinesses Headline ‘Agri Asenso’ Filipino Food Month Special

Thu, 05/02/2024 - 13:43
Sabanana Chips

DILIMAN, Quezon City—Learning Sites for Agriculture (LSAs) and partner agribusinesses of the Agricultural Training Institute (ATI) showcased their food products and culinary offerings for the whole month of April on the teleradyo program “Agri Asenso” on DZRH.

This is in line with the celebration of the Filipino Food Month, by virtue of Presidential Proclamation No. 469, series of 2018.

ATI-certified LSAs such as Villa Socorro Farm in Pagsanjan, Laguna; Sayao Farms in Kumalarang, Zamboanga del Sur; and Millan Integrated Farm in Macrohon, Southern Leyte shared how they started their respective businesses and the strategies they used to adapt well with the food market over the years.

In 2008, Villa Socorro Farm started producing “Sabanana” Chips to help farmers in their area amidst the low buying price of fresh saba.

“We also saw the opportunity in the market as it seemed like there were known brands for potato chips and corn chips but none for banana chips,” Raymund Vincent Aaron, Villa Socorro Farm’s “Banana Chief”, said in an “Agri Asenso” interview on April 6.

At present, they have barbecue at garlic flavors for their “Sabanana Chips”. In 2021, they decided to produce camote chips which are now available in kimchi and truffle aioli flavors.

“We made an effort to make our camote chips in tri-color. In one pack, you will see white, orange, and violet chips. This makes the chips enticing to the eyes,” Aaron explained.

Their products are available in local “pasalubong” stores, selected supermarkets, and online via Shopee. Their “Sabanana” Chips are also being exported in 22 countries around the world including South Korea.

Meanwhile, Sayao Farms established their “Kan-anan sa Balsa” or floating restaurant in 2007 to add value to their fish pond business. They serve farm-to-table dishes, and their bestsellers are “pinaputok na tilapia” (Filipino-style stuffed fish), prawns, crabs, native chicken, and their sweet-water coconut.

 “Kan-anan sa Balsa” is open Mondays to Sundays, from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. They have a total of 10 huts that can accommodate 60 to 75 people.

In the Visayas, Millan Integrated Farm focused on producing herbs as a way to avoid artificial flavor enhancers. Now, they sell herbs to customers and restaurants in their area.

Millan Integrated Farm, also known as “Happy Farm”, has rosemary, stevia which is a natural sweetener, tarragon, peppermint, mint, oregano, and basil.

Farm manager Jazpher Millan shared that they use aloe vera as a natural root growth hormone and companion plants like marigold to repel insects that may damage the herbs.

As the series-ender, “Shambala Silang” owner Riza Matibag Muyot talked about the regional dishes they offer at their “Mana Kitchen” in Cavite. This was for the 159th episode of “Agri Asenso” that aired on April 27.

Their native food offerings include “kulawo”, made with banana blossom; “piyangang”, a chicken dish; “watwat”, an Ibaloy pork soup; and “adobong manok sa dilaw” which is said to be General Emilio Aguinaldo’s favorite dish.

All four episodes for the Filipino Food Month special of “Agri Asenso” are available on Facebook via www.facebook.com/ATIinteractive.