DTI turns over garlic processing facility to MMSU

By Daniel P. Tapaoan, Jr.


The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has turned over a Shared Service Facility on Garlic Processing (SSF-GC) to Mariano Marcos State University (MMSU) last March 12. 


Located at the MMSU Food Processing and Innovation Center (FPIC), the SSF seeks to reinforce the production and commercialization of garlic in Ilocos Norte. 


The SSF-GC is a support initiative of the DTI to increase the application of processing technology with appropriate equipment for value-adding products such as garlic flakes, powder chips, pickles, and black garlic.


A Usufruct Agreement for the project was also entered into by MMSU President Shirley C. Agrupis, DTI Region I Director Grace F. Baluyan, and DTI Ilocos Norte OIC-Director Rosario Q. Quodola. 


Dr. Agrupis thanked DTI for the continued support to MMSU, assuring that the SSF will surely help the University’s research and development (R&D) initiatives to boost the garlic industry in the province. The project is in support to the Technology Application and Livelihood and Outreach Network Program of MMSU through the Science and Technology (S&T) Park.


Ms. Baluyan explained the DTI puts up SSF to provinces, particularly academic institutions, because “the academe plays a big role in making development efforts sustainable.” She also expressed hope the project will benefit the garlic producers and communities in the future.


Dr. Marlowe U. Aquino, S&T director, said the project intends to benefit the communities and the micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) involved in garlic production, processing and trading. He added the FPIC will open the SSF to all interested communities engaged in the garlic industry.


The SSF project at MMSU is also in support to House Bill 8109 filed by Ilocos Norte 2nd District Representative Angelo M. Barba. The proposal seeks to declare the province as the ‘Garlic Capital’ of the Philippines. Ilocos Norte has remained as the top producer of garlic in the country with an average production of 55.7 percent or 4,161 metric tons annually, a report from the Department of Agriculture showed.  


Aside from the facility, the University also houses the black garlic processing machine donated by Japanese company Takara Inc. and is taking the lead in producing black garlic in international and local markets, in partnership with the Japan International Cooperation Agency and Ilocos Norte government. (READ: https://www.mmsu.edu.ph/news/japanese-firm-donates-black-garlic-processing-machine).


The university currently establishes the Php 35.5 million-worth National Garlic and Other Agri-Food Condiments R&D Center this year, funded by the Department of Science and Technology. (READ: https://www.mmsu.edu.ph/news/dost-oks-p355-m-for-garlic-food-condiments-research-hub).


Last year, the DTI also turned over the Php 50 million-worth SSF to MMSU’s National Bioenergy Research and Innovation Center (NBERIC). It is a sophisticated one-stop technology hub for utilization by various stakeholders especially the micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs). (READ: https://www.mmsu.edu.ph/news/dti-opens-php-50-m-shared-service-facility-in-mmsu).


Over the years, the DTI has put up SSF in various towns and provinces to upgrade the production of local products to meet the standards of the global market. (StratCom)