FROM fresh cow’s milk to mozzarella fior di latte, Gouda and white cheese, yoghurt, butter and more, Highland Fresh Milk Processing Plant’s products are of the highest quality.

And the creamy add-ins would not have been possible without the aid of technology upgrading.

The Highland Freshmilk Processing Plant or Highland Fresh in El Salvador, Misamis Oriental was established in 1987 by the Northern Mindanao Federation of Dairy Cooperatives (NMFDC) that started with seven primary cooperatives and one associate cooperative in Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental.

Assisted by the then Philippine Dairy Corporation, now the National Dairy Authority (NDA), Highland Fresh started as a household-based milk production and processing facility serving more than 800 dairy farmer-members through the cooperative’s dairy animal stocks dispersal program, technical assistance on dairy management, pasture and forage management, milk production and processing and marketing.

The cooperative later received various assistance that enabled it to establish a milk processing facility with a capacity of 500 liters of raw milk per hour on a rent-to-own scheme, and operates two compact dairy farms that raise Holstein Friesian, Holstein Sahwal, Jersey and other breeds of dairy cattle.

Despite the increased raw milk production of up to 3,500 liters daily, stiff competition has made it urgent for the cooperative to innovate and add value to its product lines.

And DOST-region 10 came in. An array of technology intervention packages helped cream up its production, namely: manufacturing productivity extension, cleaner production technology assessment, training, packaging, label designing and laboratory analyses.

The set of technology intervention was availed of by the Highland Fresh through DOST’s Small Enterprises Technology Upgrading Program (Setup).

Through Setup, the dairy processing plant was able to acquire equipment such as cream separator, mozzarella stretcher and chiller.

The new equipment paved the way for Highland Fresh’s value addition and creation of milk products that includes cream, butter, Gouda cheese, white cheese, mozarella cheese, yoghurt and other milk products and by-products on top of its traditional flavored homogenized and pasteurized milk.

The cream separator, for instance, separates the cream from milk at the rate of 300 liters per hour.