HALAL goat raising is seen to be developed in Mindanao in response to the demand for chevon (goat meat) in the Middle East.
In 2015, Sultan Kudarat State University (SKSU), one of the three academic partners of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Davao Region for research and development (R&D), has developed a Halal way of raising goats. Currently, SKSU is transferring the technology to the goat raisers in Sultan Kudarat.
The other R&D partners are the University of Southern Mindanao (USM) in Kabacan and the Central Mindanao University (CMU) in Bukidnon.
“They studied on how to develop the area in such a way that no contaminants and animals can enter. They also studied who are qualified to raise goats, what trainings they needed, and also the feeds, how to manage the wastes. In Halal, you don’t only look at the ‘Halal-ness’ but also the safety. For a product or service to be considered Halal, it has to be safe first – similar to our usual food safety concerns,” DOST-Davao Regional Director Anthony Sales said.
He added that for this technology transfer component of DOST, they are looking forward for the entire Mindanao to be the coverage of the project as there had been plans to export chevon in the Middle East. The goats, he said, can be marketed live or as meat.
The R&D partners are also encouraged to venture into studies for Halal processing, and not just Halal production, as the former would be more value-adding.
He cited that a school in Luzon had developed ready-to-eat meals from chevon like papaitan, caldereta, and adobo among others, which are packaged in tetra packs similar to the ready-to-eat viand items sold in grocery stores. It can be heated and eaten anytime, anywhere. Sales said he would want something similar to be developed in Mindanao as well.
He added they had received a proposal from USM for a Halal tilapia raising project.
In other areas of the country, there had been research proposals on the processing of Halal cosmetics, and other beauty products including lotion and other creams. As for USM, SKSU, and CMU the proposals are mostly into the food production side.
For the entire Halal program, Sales said the budget is at P50 million to P100 million and the distribution of funds to the academic research partners are proposal-driven.