DILIMAN, Quezon City—Despite the challenges in the agriculture sector, some women entrepreneurs in the country remain positive that the Philippine farming industry will thrive in the years to come.
One of them is 23-year-old Alyssa Guhiting of Guiguinto, Bulacan, who sees the big potential in farming even with the negative perceptions about it.
“They say farming is a lot of hard work, but I think there is still a big chance of being successful in this field. Of course, there are risks. Nonetheless, I think it is as financially rewarding because [food] is a necessity and farming is here to stay,” Guhiting said.
Guhiting is one of over 100 participants that came to the Agricultural Training Institute’s (ATI) Free Seminar on Poultry Production and Processing. A graduate of information technology and now an employee at a business process outsourcing company, Guhiting is thinking of putting up an agricultural business for a sustainable livelihood in years ahead.
“I’ve been thinking of going into the poultry business, but I do not have the necessary knowledge to do so. I looked up for online information on any related seminars and found the announcement for today’s event of the ATI,” she said.
Guhiting knows that her work schedule may pose a challenge in managing a business but the young professional is already thinking of ways to make it work, “You just need to have a strong will to make it happen. I already started urban gardening a few years back, but I know I still have a lot to learn.”
The free seminar featured two experts, namely, Dr. Annalie Paragas of Tarlac Agricultural University and Lourdes Rivera of Ultima Entrepinoy Forum Center. Paragas talked about free-range chicken farming, particularly its characteristics, advantages, requirements, and some organic-based tips.
Rivera, on the other hand, provided a special demonstration on preparing chicken-based siomai, dumpling, hamburger, ham, and others.
ATI Director Alfredo Aton graced the opening ceremonies to welcome the participants, especially the women attendees in light of the International Women’s Day celebration. He urged everyone to make use of their time to gain new knowledge as this can be the key to changing their lives for the better.
Thirty-four-year-old businesswoman Josephine Unsi from Buluan, Maguindanao made sure to make the most out of the seminar by taking notes during the lectures and demonstration. Like Guhiting, Unsi is determined to make a living out of farming.
“My husband and I want to start a chicken production business since there is none in our community yet,” she said.
Unsi, a mother of three, also shared her hopes to see a brighter future for farming in their homeland, “I hope that farmers are given the help they need, especially those in Mindanao.”
The latest free seminar was held on March 8, 2019 at the ATI Rural Development and Education Center in this city.