A FACILITY for peanut processing opened on Tuesday in Sitio Lantad, Barangay Kibanban in Balingasag, Misamis Oriental.

The P564.685-million peanut-processing facility is now being managed by the Lantad Multi Purpose Cooperative (LMPC) after it was officially turned over by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) and the provincial government of Misamis Oriental.

Zoraida O. Macadindang, Provincial Agrarian Reform officer, said the facility is part of a three-component project that aims to promote peanut production in Sitio Lantad.

Included in the peanut processing facility are the equipment and cooking materials. Also turned over was a four-wheel vehicle that the cooperative can use in marketing the finished product.

Aside from the facility, part of the project is the planting of peanuts within a five-hectare area and the provision of trainings and seminars to the members of the cooperative on enterprise development.

Under the project, 20 percent of the harvested peanuts will be used as raw material for the processing of peanut butter, piniato and peanut snacks while the remaining 80 percent will be sold to local traders in the municipality of Balingasag.

On the average, peanuts are harvested within three to four months at three to four tons per harvest.

Macadindang said the peanuts will be sold to local traders at P30 per gallon (dried).

The cooperative was funded by the DAR-Spots under the Comprehensive Livelihood and Emergency Employment Program (Cleep), in partnership with the local government unit of Balingasag and the Provincial Government of Misamis Oriental.
The cooperative also opened its own building on Tuesday in time for the turnover of the peanut processing facility.

During the turnover, Misamis Oriental Governor Oscar Moreno urged the farmers to cooperate and help the government in developing Sitio Lantad.

The turnover was attended by Balingasag Mayor Alexis Quina, municipal and barangay officials, provincial capitol employees, operatives of the Philippine National Police, Armed Forces of the Philippines and hundreds of farmers in the area.

article by Annabelle L. Ricalde of SSC

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