Bio-organic fertilizer plant opens in Panabo

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Friday, January 24, 2014


BIO-ORGANIC fertilizer is now being produced in commercially by a multi-million bio-organic processing plant in Panabo City, owned and run by the Organic Producers and Exporters Corporation or Opec, the trading arm of Foundation for Agrarian Reform Cooperatives in Mindanao or Farmcoop.

The plant is touted to be the biggest of its kind in the Philippines today.

Funded partly by a grant of P1.5 million from the Department of Agriculture, the plant started with a 600 square meter preparatory building and a 5,040 square meter post-processing covered structure. This was later expanded to a total of 10,000 square meters or one hectare, according to Koronado Apuzen, Opec president and chief executive officer.

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The heaping field for active composting and curing process nearby is now sheltered under a half-hectare shed at Opec's Organic Agro-Industrial Complex or Ecopark here in Panabo. All in all, according to Apuzen, the composting facility covers a one-hectare area.

"There's a rising demand for organic fertilizer in Mindanao especially with the growing movement among farmers and consumers for organic vegetables and fruits. We're now producing high-quality compost and foliar fertilizer -- and it's all organic," Apuzen said.

The Opec president said this is part of their long range plan of converting all the farms under Farmcoop from conventional farming which use chemical fertilizer, to organic farming, using only organic fertilizer.

The bio-organic fertilizer plant is equipped with a state-of-the-art Compost Turner and a stationary Mixer fabricated by Farmcoop's own mechanic welder Jessie Lucero.

Completing the facility, the plant also has two Sifters, a bone crusher and a bone powderizer and a six-wheeler transit mixer.

The composting plant, according to Apuzen, can produce more than 3,000 bags of high grade compost fertilizer a week. Opec's compost fertilizer has been found to contain micro-nutrients and high organic matter, based on laboratory analysis by the Department of Agriculture.

Also soon to rise in Opec's Ecopark, is a P6-million bio-organic plastic plant as well as a plant facility to produce fiber out of banana trunks for export to Europe. (PR)

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on January 24, 2014.

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