The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) through its program Shared Service Facility(SSF) awarded the cacao processing equipment and machineries to ASCOT during the Turn-Over Ceremony held today, August 24, 2016 at ASCOT, Zabali Campus, Baler, Aurora.

Turn-over Ceremony of Cacao Processing Shared-Service Facility
Turn-over Ceremony of Cacao Processing Shared Service Facility

The Shared Service Facility worth Php. 456, 500 comprises of Cacao Bean Roaster, Cacao Grinder, Mixed Cacao Making Machine with Manual Guitar Cutter, Stainless Steel Working Table, Sorting Table with Oil Drainage and Foot Stamp Sealer.

Dir. Brigida Pili, Provincial Director of DTI Aurora and Mr. Aldrin Veneracion, Senior Trade and Industry Development Specialist graced the ceremony and talked about the project collaboration and coordination. Mr. Veneracion stated that the project was initiated by the ASCOT Alumni Association through the leadership of the Alumni President, Mr. Danny Enguerra. He mentioned that the Cacao Processing SSF Project aims to maximize the revenue from cacao beans by transforming farmers from mere passive producers to active processors of cacao.

Meanwhile, Dir. Pili also explained that the Shared Service Facility project aims to improve the quality and productivity of microenterprises and SMEs by addressing the gaps and restricted access in the value chain of the industry by means of providing processing machines and equipment for the benefit of everyone, not just the members of the ASCOT Alumni Association but also the students, researchers and most the cacao processors and producers of the province.

In response, ASCOT through the College President, Dr. Doracie B. Zoleta-Nantes guaranteed that together with the collaboration of the ASCOT Alumni Association, Research and Extension Office and the Department of Industrial Technology, will do every effort for the success of this joint project. She also added that the Shared Service Facility that are responsive to the needs of the cacao planters and household processors in the province will also be very beneficial for the students and researchers of the College.