Harvesting the bangus was truly enjoyable, and it’s very rewarding to see a bountiful harvest. However, the hard work and exhaustion involved in harvesting should not be underestimated

TOMAS OPPUS, February 13, 2024 – In an effort to pave the way for a more dynamic and inclusive future for the fishing industry, the Canlupao Fisherfolk Association (CAFA) from Southern Leyte, consisting of 22 members, has not only reaped profits from their Bangus in Cage project but has also provided a platform for youth engagement and economic growth in Tomas Oppus Southern Leyte. This meaningful contribution was evident during their recent harvest on January 26, 2024.

Mr. Kinrich, CAFA’s Secretary, expressed his enthusiasm and pride in their first harvest experience, stating, “Lingaw kaayo ang pag harvest sa bangus, and maka proud kaayo nga daghang bangus nga na harvest, but at the same time, dili lalim ang ka hago ug ka kapoy sa pagharvest.” His sentiments reflect both the joy of success and the challenges inherent in the endeavor.

(Harvesting the bangus was truly enjoyable, and it’s very rewarding to see a bountiful harvest. However, the hard work and exhaustion involved in harvesting should not be underestimated.)

Driven by a passion for fishing, Kinrich and other members found a sense of purpose and skill enhancement through the program’s support. Kinrich expressed his gratitude, saying, “I’ve always been interested in joining the association since fishing is one of my hobbies. The training provided has been immensely helpful. I’d like to thank SAAD for all the support it has provided for our group.”

Despite initial obstacles as novices in bangus culture, CAFA’s determination and collaborative spirit led to a promising beginning for their Bangus in Cage venture. Under the guidance of their president, Mr. Cresente Moralde, the association achieved remarkable success, with a total production volume of 1,953 kilograms and gross sales of Php327,725.00.

Reflecting on their accomplishment, Mr. Moralde remarked, “Sold out tanan amon bangus, kuwang pa gani.” The overwhelming demand for their product speaks to the quality and dedication of CAFA members.

(We sold out all our bangus. Many still want to buy, unfortunately it was all sold out.)

Looking ahead, CAFA is already planning their next steps. With profits deposited in the bank, they aim to expand their operations for even higher production in their second cropping. Mr. Moralde emphasized the significant impact of the program on their livelihoods, expressing gratitude for the support received.

In 2023, the association was introduced to the Bangus Culture in Cage Livelihood Package by the program, which included fishing inputs amounting to P1,015,630.00. This package consisted of 5000 bangus fingerlings, 202 bags of feeds, 1 HDPE cage, and 10 units of fish tubs. This initiative not only empowered the association but also exemplified the potential for youth engagement and economic growth in the fishing industry.###

Writer: Shanly A. Salahid

About DA-BFAR SAAD Phase 2:
The Department of Agriculture – Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources-Special Area for Agricultural Development (DA-BFAR SAAD) Program Phase 2 aims to contribute to poverty reduction and improve the living conditions of vulnerable fisherfolk and their communities by providing sustainable livelihood opportunities and support for poor fishing sectors. These interventions intend to complement the DA banner programs and assist beneficiaries in establishing community-based fishery enterprises. The BFAR-SAAD strives to enhance food security and promote economic growth in targeted areas across the Philippines.