Monday, October 18, 2021

Feeding program for 10,000 kids eyed

THE Philippine Exporters Confederation (Philexport)-Davao targets to conduct a banana feeding program for 10,000 kids in Day Care Centers in the region.

The feeding program is in partnership with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Agriculture (DA), local government units (LGUs) and different school beneficiaries.

"This will provide bananas and banana by-products to the kids in Day Care centers initially in the areas of Compostela Valley and Davao del Norte. We have gathered the information from the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Officers that there are more than 10,000 children in Day Care centers and if they become recipients of our banana feeding program, then this will be a very good opportunity for them to also get a taste of exportable-quality bananas," Philexport executive director Marizon Loreto said.

She added the idea was formulated with the intention of lessening the 20 to 30 percent of supposed-to-be exported bananas but have slightly fallen short of some strict export standards of receiving countries.

Loreto assured that the bananas are very much edible and of great quality.

Loreto said DSWD is pleased with the proposal because under the government's supplemental feeding program, a meal has to be served to the Day Care centers with an allocation of about P11 per kid daily.

"Even if we get a small percentage of that P11, let's say we only get P1 for the bananas, we will be able to provide 10,000 bananas to kids, that will then be P10,000 revenue to the farmers. That means, the farmers will still benefit from this," she said.

She added what is needed is to uphold the commitment of the banana players as they also see this as paying forward to the children because they have been earning a lot from banana export.

"After all, bananas are proven to be a very nutritious food. So good for the children, and good for the banana players as well," Loreto said, adding school beneficiaries are positive after the proposal was presented to them.

The official launching of the proposal is set on the second day of the Banana Congress on October 13 at the SMX Convention Center, SM Lanang Premier. (JPA)
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