THE Provincial Veterinary Office (PVO) of Negros Occidental has started evaluating the nominees for this year's search for outstanding animal raisers in the province.

The winners will again form part of the annual “Pasidungog sa Panguma, Pangisda kag Pangkasapatan” awardees, who will be recognized during the Pana-ad sa Negros Festival next month.

The Office of the Provincial Agriculturist (OPA) will identify the recipients of outstanding farmers and fisherfolk awards.

Cathy Narez, project development officer II of PVO, Tuesday said the group of evaluators is composed of representatives from the Department of Agriculture (DA) Western Visayas, Negros Association of Animal Feed and Drug Suppliers (Naafeds), media, and personnel of PVO.

She said that since last week they have already evaluated the nominees from First, Sixth and Fourth Districts, who are among the 78 nominees for this year.

“The annual search aims to recognize the nominees’ best practices which can be replicated by other local animal raisers,” Narez said, reiterating that the initiative highlights the raisers’ contribution as partners of the Provincial Government in implementing various programs and measures for the development of the livestock and poultry industry.

Now on its eight year, the province-wide search is again recognizing outstanding local farmer-raisers, entrepreneurs, technicians, associations, local government units (LGUs), and agriculture tourism advocates involved in livestock and poultry development.

The 23 categories include outstanding backyard swine raiser, most innovative animal raiser, outstanding dairy cattle raiser, outstanding sheep raiser, outstanding duck raiser, outstanding beef cattle raiser, outstanding integrated farming practitioner, outstanding livestock and poultry entrepreneur, outstanding technician in artificial insemination for large animals.

Other individual categories are outstanding backyard egg producer, outstanding carabao raiser, outstanding goat raiser, outstanding free-range chicken raiser, outstanding animal tourism advocate, outstanding technician in artificial insemination for swine, and outstanding broiler integrator.

For group category outstanding family in livestock production, outstanding animal breeding center, outstanding LGU in pasteur development, outstanding association in animal genetic improvement, and most cooperative association in the implementation of Negros First Animal Livelihood Program.

The two other awards are outstanding volunteer association on animal health services and outstanding association in animal product development.

The PVO targets to complete the evaluation in all districts by March 27.

After which, deliberation of the results will then follow prior to the awarding ceremony on April 21 at the Pana-ad Park and Stadium in Barangay Mansilingan, Bacolod City.