Some 26 Local Economic and Investment Promotions Officers, Tourism Officers and Micro, Small and Medium Entrepreneurs (MSMEs) from SOCCSKSARGEN (Region 12) trooped to Bulacan to see “first-hand’ the province’s “best practices” on enterprise development.
Bulacan Provincial Packing Services and Toll Packing Center (PPSTPC), the country’s first government-run packing center, was visited by the group to see and learn how a government entity can effectively and efficiently run a business enterprise to help MSMEs particularly those engaged in food processing.
Established a few years ago in Malolos, seat of government of Bulacan, the packing center has only an initial capital outlay of P1.8 million provided by the Department of Science and Technology while the building and the land served as the counterpart by the provincial government.
But according to said LGU, their assets which included the different equipment purchased now totaled P15million.
The success story of this endeavor, they narrated, comes from MSMEs mostly food processors who patronized their packing center and have now established a niche in the food processing business.
PPSTPC is under the direct supervision of the Provincial Cooperative and Enterprise Development Office (PCEDO).
Aside from packing services, PCEDO also offers product labeling services and employs an in-house creative artist/designer for that purpose. “We cater to MSMEs who can even just afford to pay 50 labels for their product,’ PCEDO pointed out, to emphasize their office’s mission to assist small businessmen.
The center is now FDA/LTO-certified (Food and Drug Administration-License To Operate) but they are still planning to have it ISO-Certified.
Bulacan, now under the helm of Governor Wilhelmino Sy–Alvarado, boasts as the Cooperative Capital of the Philippines with numerous of its home-grown cooperatives belonging to the Top 100 Millionaire Cooperatives in the country.
After a short presentation on plant operation and on-site plant tour, the region 12 delegates were treated to a side trip on their museum and the historical Barasaoin Church, seat of the first Philippine Congress under General Emilio Aguinaldo, the country’s first President.