The Department of Agriculture in Caraga region (DA-13) expects enhanced seaweed production in a town in Dinagat Islands province upon the completion of needed facilities.
In a statement sent to the Philippine News Agency on Thursday, the DA-13 said it is fast-tracking the completion of the Seaweed Solar Dryer and Storage Facility in Barangay New Mabuhay in the municipality of Dinagat that will benefit hundreds of seaweed farmers and local fishermen in the area.
The project, with a total cost of PHP3,650,575 and funded under the Philippine Rural Development Project, was started in the last week of July and is expected to be completed in December.
“The project will support the business enterprise of seaweed farmers in the area by providing production inputs, buying fresh seaweeds of the member farmers, and processing of produce to raw dried seaweeds,” the DA-13 said.
It will primarily benefit the members of the New Mabuhay Seaweed Farmer and Fisherfolk Association (NMSFFA) who are engaged in the production of dried seaweeds.
The solar dryer has a capacity of 7,500 kilograms of seaweeds per batch while the warehouse, with a span of 3 x 6 meters, can store 5 metric tons of seaweeds.
The project also includes one motorized flatboat that will be utilized for hauling wet and dried seaweeds from the NMSFFA members.
“Aside from seaweed production, the project will also support the community-based enterprise of the members of the association. This includes the proper handling and moving of seaweed commodities and enhance the post-harvest processing to increase the income of the farmers and the NMSFFA,” the DA-13 said. (PNA)