MATI City, capital of Davao Oriental province in southern Philippines, recently launched its P45-million poultry dressing plant in collaboration with chicken farmers to ensure adequate and low-cost supply for locals and eventually expand sales to outside markets.
“Filipinos love to eat chicken… This is a staple for Filipinos. We have to make it affordable, and that is the role of government now, we have to do government spending for our people,” said Mayor Michelle N. Rabat during the plant’s opening ceremony last week.
The dressing plant, which can process 20,000 chickens per eight-hour shift, is seen to provide employment as well as serve a revenue-generating enterprise for the local government.
“We can earn from this, not necessarily like pure service. But it can be an enterprise for the city as well. For the growers, thank you for making a wager on and investing in Mati,” Ms. Rabat said.
One of the private sector partners, Farmers Choice Agri Trading, has started producing the “Mati’s Choice Chicken” brand, initially sold at the city market.
“The private sector came up with this idea to help deflate the price of chicken. Everytime you buy Mati’s Choice Chicken, you help a family of farmers,” said Councilor Eric N. Rabat, chair of the local council’s agriculture committee.
Meanwhile, Davao Oriential Trade and Industry Provincial Director Lucky Siegfred M. Balleque said they are also promoting poultry raising in communities to ensure continued supply to maximize the plant’s capacity.
National Meat Inspection Service Davao Region Technical Director Lailanie Rose Rico assured during the launch that the agency will help the city attain certification to distribute outside the city. — Maya M. Padillo