We are expecting an astonishing transformation to the problem faced by Abacaleros in the province of Catanduanes after the 6 days successful holding of the 7th Abaca Festival.

Our abacaleros’ only consuelo de bobo is the increase in pricing, rather than the lip service that has been given to them by some agencies or political leaders.

One of the reasons for the price decrease is that the classes are not fit for market demand. Apart from the influence of the war between Ukraine and Russia, our abacaleros are focused on classes that are not in demand in the market, according to PhilFIDA.

One DOST official,ย  Dr. Julius L. Leaรฑo, Jr., OIC Director of DOST-PTRI (Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Textile Research Institute) ย ย ย was taken aback when one of the abacaleros stated that the price of abaca in Catanduanes is currently only 25 pesos per kilo, despite the fact that it is the primary source of livelihood for the majority of the island’s farmers.

According to Dr. Leaรฑo, there is a scarcity of abaca fiber in the Philippines, particularly those of the S2 type that are used in textiles. They pay 200 pesos per kilo for those S2 classes, which is why they were surprised by the price.

To address this issue, the involved line agencies should look for more ways to alter the present price, which is seriously harming the province’s primary source of income.

We believe in the common adage, “If there is a will, there is a way.”

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The DOST Catanduanes, led by Provincial Director Grace T. Molina, is responding to social media remarks that the provincial government is enjoying the Abaca festival, while the current position of the Abacaleros remains uncertain.

She emphasized in our interview at Radyo Peryodiko that there is still hope for the sector to become more significant. Because of the price fall, they launched the Aba-nobasyon, with the intention of enhancing the other byproducts of abaca, not just the fiber product, but also the waste materials from abaca.

It is for this reason that they brought an abaca byproduct developer so that abacaleros would have a clear understanding that there is still money for abaca waste. In their forum, they are planning a trial project in one of the communities to learn about other products that can be developed than fiber.

She stated that there is already a Catandunganon from Pandan requesting a supply of the byproduct, and that the commodity has a market. While the fiber is still not stable, this can be introduced to the abacaleros as an alternative source.

Kudos to the DOST for such endeavors, and we anticipate more of the same for the benefit of our abacaleros in the province.

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We would like to congratulate the officers and members, the committees of Brizo Clan Incorporated in the Hitoma area for the 9th Grand Reunion, which drew almost 500 kapamilya on May 14, 2023.

Several kinds of surprises and parlor games keep the clan members entertained all day. We thank our kapamilya for working so hard to share their blessings with the family through the hefty prizes.

More exciting reunions are planned for next year to make it more fascinating and pleasurable for the guests.

(Ferdie Brizo/BicolPeryodikonewspaper/column)

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