Developing year-round quality feeds for livestock


Developing year-round quality feeds for livestock

by Patrick Raymund A. Lesaca


The Philippines imports most of its milk requirements from leading dairy producing countries. Stated in the Philippine Dairy Update (Jan-Jun 2018) by the National Dairy Authority, the dairy supply situation is characterized by increasing local milk production, despite the availability of huge land areas suitable for livestock raising for the first semester of 2018, milk and dairy products had increased by six percent.

The dairy cattle industry is one of the primary sources of income among cattle raisers, especially the farmers from the province of Isabela in Cagayan Valley, where there is a wide range of rice and corn fields, and therefore could be an abundant source of feed resources (i.e. green corn as forage/silage, rice straw, corn stover)


However, despite the vastnesses of areas, many dairy farmers are still faced with scarcity problem of quality feed resources for dairy animals especially during dry season. The supply of forage is very low during the dry spell. The wet season is the peak season wherein quality feeds are high in supply, therefore contributing to the good milk production of cows.


To address feed quality and scarcity, and improve the current state of the dairy sector, it is recommended to come up with quality feed and roughages that will be made available all-year-round. Forages and roughages are the backbone of the industry, because ruminants like cow depend on them for milk and meat production.


Farmers need to be proficient in managing the development of forages and having an alternative supply of quality forage during lean months will help reduce the cost of feed production and increase milk production and profit. A possible approach that can be made is through forage production and silage, enriched with locally-available fodder, could provide a year-round consistent feed supply with low-cost quality nutrients for livestock.  


To operationalize the supply of quality forages, the Bureau of Agricultural Research (BAR) is currently working with the Isabela State University (ISU) on a BAR-funded project, “Adoption and Commercialization of Green Corn, Green Corn-based Silage, Haylage and UMMB Production for Dairy Cattle in Cagayan Valley”. Leading the projects are Dr. Nilo E. Padilla and Dr. Diosdado C. Cañete of ISU in collaboration with Department of Agriculture Region-Regional Field Office 2.


The primary of objective of the project is to improve dairy production and ultimately increase the income of dairy farmers through the utilization of green corn silage, haylage and Urea Molasses Mineral Block (UMMB) supplementation using locally available feed resources.


According to the project proponents, green corn silage production, nutrient-enriched rice straw (as haylage) and the use of UMMB have been proven to improve nutrition among dairy animals, and thus improving milk and meat production.


Corn silage is a high energy feed resource for ruminants being part forage and part grain. In terms of nutrient content, corn silage is lower in crude protein and higher in digestible energy than other forages. Corn is relatively easy to ensile. As a minimum feed requirement, it is essential to provide a green fodder supplement to enhance rumen function for bovine animals and to increase milk production. Forage conserved this way is known as ‘ensiled forage’ or ‘silage’ and will keep for up to three years without deteriorating. Silage is very palatable to livestock and can be fed at any time.  It is also considered the most convenient way to conserve forage crops.  

According to the report of ISU, the project has been piloted in Malaya Development Cooperative (MDC) and Quezon Dairy Farmers Cooperative. The farmers tapped in the piloted areas will plant corn and will be at 70-85 days old corn. Corn will be chopped and packed in a 30-40 kgs capacity sacks with polyethylene bag, air removed from the bags using vacuum pump, sealed, and stored in a place safe of rats. The silage is ready for feeding after 3 weeks in storage.

On-site and experiential learnings on: 1) production of silage, haylage, and UMMB, 2) showcasing or demonstration feeding of silage and haylage, use of UMMB as feed supplement, 3) cooperative/ association strengthening, among others have already been conducted.

As a result of the awareness campaign and capability building component of this BAR-funded project, the MDC has fully adopted silage as feed to their dairy animals. Milk production has gradually increased from 3 liters/ head/day to 10-11 liters/ head/ day. The cooperative is now growing their own corn for silage production, while the other coop is now ready to produce their own silage.

With the project on board, BAR and ISU project is expected to address the year-round availability of nutrient-rich feedstuff for dairy cattle/carabao; increased lactation period, milk production per head and total milk production (community, municipality, province, region); higher household income; improved nutrition of farm families, and less dependence on imported milk and milk products. ###




For more information:

Dr. Nilo E. Padilla and Dr. Diosdado C. Cañete

Professor VI and Associate Professor IV

Isabela State University, Echague, Isabela

Telephone Number(s): 09163225967 and 09088620681

Fax Number: (078) 305-0120 2.7.

Email Address:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  



Apali nuggets: A healthy option for non-pork eaters


Apali nuggets: A healthy option for non-pork eaters


by Rita T. dela Cruz


Who would have thought that an indigenous tuber crop, found in the tropical forest of the Philippines can be turned into nuggets, a healthy alternative for non-pork eaters?

The Apali nuggets have recently gained the public’s attention when it won the “Best Product Award” (third place) during the “First Mindanao Technology Commercialization Forum” held in Davao City on November 24, 2018. The event showcased different innovative products generated from supported research of the Bureau of Agricultural Research (BAR) in six regions of Mindanao (9, 10, 11, 12, Caraga, and ARMM).

Apali (Dioscorea esculenta Lour. Burkill) or commonly known as the “lesser yam” is a tuber crop that is rich in carbohydrates and is a good addition to the usual rice and corn.

According to Jorgea C. Galindo of the Research Division of the Department of Agriculture-Regional Field Office (DA-RFO) 11, Apali is highly-nutritious and has medicinal properties that even the early Filipinos and their ancestors have been consuming this crop. But due to the introduction of other crops in the country, Apali has been set aside and has been taken for granted and therefore, has not been cultivated in many areas of the country.

Apali is mostly found in marginal, mostly secluded areas. It is a climate-resilient crop and can sustain long drought. It is also resistant to pest and diseases and easy to manage.

With the aim of promoting and increasing the cultivation of Apali, the Research Division of DA-RFO 11 has been studying this crop, specifically its production so that more farmers will be encouraged to grow this indigenous crop.

“We have collected and studied different varieties of Apali. This research initiative is also in harmony with the government’s effort to promote the use of underutilized crops such as the Apali and potentially address food security,” explained Galindo.

DA-RFO 11 has developed appropriate culture and management for Apali including soil and planting requirements, harvesting, and postharvest. In their study, it was found out that a hectare of Apali can yield from 25 to 70 tons following the production management that they have developed.

“Apali can be grown even without fertilization granting that the area is already rich in organic matter. Mostly, this crop loves sandy loam and clay loam, with soil that is high in organic matter. It thrives in open or partial shaded area being trellised. It can be intercropped with peanuts or mungbean,” said Galindo.

DA-RFO 11 has also developed various products from Apali. Due to its potato-like characteristics, Apali can be processed into cue, boiled, sweetened, jams, ice cream, candies, or as vegetable mixed or stewed with meat.

“We started Apali fries and then we also tried Apali chips. When we acquired the equipment, after peeling and slicing as chips, we dehydrated, milled and turned it into flour. The texture of Apali flour is similar to all-purpose flour. Trial studies have been done using the basic food recipes like munchkin, cookies, choco chip cookies, brownies, oatmeal cookies, pineapple carrot cake, and scotch bar, among others. Most of these products were displayed during the 2017 Agriculture and Fisheries Technology Commercialization Forum and Product Exhibition (NTF) held at BAR in Diliman, Quezon City. In fact, the “Apali flour” won the “Best Product” explained Galindo.

The latest product from Apali is the nugget. “It comes from raw tuber of Apali. We extracted the starch. The leftover, called “sapal” is then processed into nuggets. “Sayang naman kase dapat makain din ito ng tao,” said Galindo.

When asked why Apali nuggets, Galindo was quick to explain that, “nuggets are among the favorite finger foods among children and adults. It can also be part of a rice meal.” Feedback from those who have tasted the Apali nuggets cited that, they were delicious, “parang ulam daw” Galindo recalled.

Apali nuggets can be part of a vegan meal or a healthy option for those who are avoiding pork but still want to enjoy a good o’l meaty nugget. ###




For more information:

Jorgea C. Galindo

Project Leader

Research Division


Manambulan, Tugbok, Davao City

mobile: 0927-3215108

email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Taro turned into delicacies is now hitting Ifugao market

2Taro (Colocasia esculenta) or locally referred to as “gabi” is rich in starch and a good source of dietary fiber. In the Northern part of the country, taro is commonly grown as source of animal feed. Now, it is being produced and packaged into local delicacies (cookies, choco chip, choco cream, and choco voron) — which are excellent pasalubong for tourists and visitors.These taro delicacies are now found in the local market in Ifugao.

In 2017, the Provincial Local Government Unit of Ifugao submitted a proposal to the Bureau of Agricultural Research (BAR) to promote viable food and by-products to increase farmers income and promote livelihood opportunities of the province including taro.

Under BAR’s National Technology Commercialization Program, the project titled “Product Improvement and Promotion of Coffee, Tinawon Rice, and Taro Products” was funded. The funding support covered further product development and improvement, design assistance, and promotional activities.

BAR Director Nicomedes P. Eleazar during an official visit in Ifugao was delighted upon seeing the Taro Cookies and Taro Choco Cream on display and are being sold at Banaue Hotel in Ifugao.“This is a testament that government money has not been put to waste, after all the end goal of funding this initiative is to commercialize generated technologies and developed products and eventually bringing them into the mainstream market,” Dir. Eleazar said.

The taro delicacies are being produced by Rural Improvement Club (RIC) Food Processor in Baguinge, Kiangan, Ifugao which is one of the 10 existing associations and organizations and 12 individual processors of coffee, Tinawon rice, and taro products in the province assisted under the project. They received technical assistance on product packaging and labeling, developed capabilities of identified processors engaged in production of products; conduct of simple cost and return analysis, among others.

1RIC Food Processors is composed of 1-6 clusters. Cluster-5 is engaged in food processing and is led by Lety Dogwe. Other members are helping in sourcing out raw materials in Barangays Haliap, Asipulo; Barangays Baguinge and Nagacadan, Kiangan.

In a week, 28 kilos of taro is being processed producing 240 boxes of Taro Cookies while 15 kilos of taro can produce 210 boxes Taro Choco Cream. Regular production could double depending on the bulk of orders.

Aside from Banaue Hotel, the taro products are also available in lodges, restaurants, souvenir shops, trade centers, public market in Lagawe, Banaue, and Kiangan. The RIC Food Processor is also distributing in Tam-an Resort in Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya and in Baguio OTOP-DTI.

“We are thankful for the assistance provided to us to further improve the marketing appeal of our products. Also, the project provided additional income to farmers and also able to create job opportunities in food processing” Dogwe shared.

Taro products were also showcased during the 14th Agricultural Fisheries Technology Forum and Product Exhibition on Aug. 30- Sept 2, 2018 at SM Megatrade Hall, Mandaluyong City. ### (Ma. Eloisa H. Aquino)

Kapeng Barako Coffee Liqueur: Keeping the spirit of Batangas Coffee


Kapeng Barako Coffee Liqueur: Keeping the spirit of Batangas Coffee

by Victoriano B. Guiam


Time was when the coffee of Batangas was the coffee of commerce of the world. Historical accounts tell of the unparalleled wealth of the coffee-growing families in Lipa of the 19th century in the remaining decades of Spanish colonial rule. This was most pronounced when the Philippines became the world’s major producer of coffee in the mid-1880s as the crop from the major coffee-producing plantations of Brazil, Africa, and Java failed because of the airborne fungal virus, Hernileia vastatrix, the cause of coffee rust, that made coffee a scarce commodity in the world market.

Those were the golden years of Batangas coffee and a period of great prosperity and opulence for Lipa. The town became the richest municipality in the Spanish colony and, for this feat, was declared the city of Villa de Lipa by royal decree in 1887. There was international preference for Philippine coffee with beans shipped to America and Europe commanding five times the price of those coming from other Asian countries. Those heady times did not last very long as Batangas coffee fell from its lofty height with a thud in 1889 with the arrival of the dreaded coffee rust in the province.

The romance of Batangas coffee began with its gradual introduction to the province beginning in the middle of the 18th century with importations of planting materials from Mexico and, in the next century, from Brazil.  The Kapeng Barako that we know took form in the 19th century when coffee was widely planted in Lipa such that by the mid-1800s about two-thirds of the municipality was planted to the crop. By the 1860s, Batangas was already exporting its Kapeng Barako to the Americas via San Francisco and, later on, to Europe with the opening of the Suez Canal.

The word barako comes from the Spanish word for wild boar, varraco, which is said to have a taste for the Coffea liberica plant’s leaves and berries. Liberica coffee is also associated with the Batangueños’ trait of being matapang because of its strong flavor and distinct aroma.  With this association, Liberica coffee came to be called “Kapeng Barako”.

Batangas coffee gained so much of a reputation that all coffee coming from the province were called “Kapeng Barako” regardless of the variety. But to the Batangueños and true-blue connoisseurs, it can only be C. liberica. Today, Kapeng Barako is considered part and parcel of the Batangueño culture.

Of the coffee varieties that are grown in Batangas and other coffee-growing areas in the country (Coffea arabica, C. robusta, C. excelsa, and C. liberica), C. liberica is different. In the international coffee trade, it is rarely seen as it accounts for less than one percent (<1%) of total coffee products. It is also grown commercially in Asia in Malaysia and, to lesser extents, in Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, and Taiwan. As with the Philippines, Liberica coffee is not exported by Malaysia with production coming from small farms that cater to niche markets such as tourists and the local café crowd.

C. liberica has the largest leaves and coffee beans of the four varieties. The bean is asymmetrical, with one end being smaller than the other. It also has a skin that is more resistant to peeling. Liberica coffee can grow in a wider range of soil types than the others. It is also taller and can reach a height of 17 meters. Owing to its resilience, it is sometimes used as rootstock for C. arabica and C. robusta seedlings. It was once thought to be resistant to coffee rust, but the experience of Lipa in the 1890s showed otherwise.


Kapeng Barako in coffee revival

In just two years after the coffee rust invasion of 1896, the country’s coffee output fell to one-sixth of its peak level. Since the fall, the produce from C. liberica never regained its pre-eminent position in the Philippine’s coffee industry again.

The coffee rust that hit the Philippines in 1889 was coupled with an insect infestation which destroyed nearly all the coffee trees in Batangas. With the loss of the country’s major coffee-producing province, national coffee production also went down and, with it, its global significance. Cavite took over some of the slack but less area was allotted to coffee because of the attraction of other crops.

By the 1950s, new more disease-resistant coffee strains had been introduced to the islands. In time, C. robusta became the more extensively planted variety, eclipsing all other varieties including C. liberica. The emergence of instant coffee as the popular coffee form was an unfortunate development as this meant that coffee prepared brewed – the hallmark of Kapeng Barako – would be preferred less.

Not wanting to have Kapeng Barako become one of the “lost coffee species”, attempts have been made by the Philippine Coffee Board to keep it from being just a memory. Ms. Pacita Juan and the Figaro Coffee company also joined the fray about 20 years ago to save it from extinction by initiating the “Save the Barako” campaign that helped return C. liberica coffee to the coffee map, aided by its re-discovery by a new generation of coffee enthusiasts.


The Kapeng Barako coffee liqueur project

Now, the Department of Agriculture-Region Field Office 4A would like to contribute to the preservation of Kapeng Barako/C. liberica by doing improvements on a coffee liqueur that is based on the brew.

Coffee liqueur is a combination of two favorite drinks: coffee and alcohol with much sugar added to balance out the alcohol’s sharp taste. Kahlua and Tia Maria are among the recognizable names in liquor stores. As far as is known, mass produced coffee liqueur does not make use of pure Kapeng Barako (C. liberica) as the coffee component (some brands are said to use inferior coffee) and this is what the SJB Liberica Enterprises, a small niche company and the main project partner, set out to do. SJB had previously worked on the marketing of a Kapeng Barako-based coffee liqueur but had limited success.

The plan was to develop further the SJB product using the traditional Batangueño preparation of Kapeng Barako. A project proposal, “Production and Processing of Premium Quality Coffee Liqueur and Packaging Development for the Niche High End Market”, was presented by Mr. Dennis DL Bihis of the DA-Quezon Agricultural Research and Experiment Station (QARES) in Tiaong, Quezon and was approved for funding by the Bureau of Agricultural Research, through its National Technology Commercialization Program. The proponents also hope that this project will stimulate the development of other products aside from coffee liqueur and, therefore, encourage the continued cultivation and preservation of the C. liberica cultivar.

The niche market is the project’s target as there is less competition, the profit margin is better and the volume requirement is lower. For these consumers, value-adding through good processing practices and excellent packaging are musts. To ensure success, project efforts included not only the active collaboration of a private sector enterprise, but Kapeng Barako growers in San Jose, Batangas as well. The project had two components: 1) improvement of the overall quality of the existing BARrako Coffee Liqueur; and 2) redesigning of the brand name and packaging to be re-introduced as premium coffee liqueur.


Market demands better Kapeng Barako coffee liqueur

While SJB already had the BARrako Coffee Liqueur product, market tests done abroad yielded mixed results. It was well received by the Japanese in the FoodEx of 2003 and 2004. Participants in the Gulf Food 2003 and MENOPE 2012 held in Dubai also drew very encouraging responses on its taste but it was also pointed out that its packaging left much to be desired for it to be displayed in Duty Free Shops. Even in the USA, Filipino stores may carry the brand but it does not attract the attention it needs.

In the Macau International Investment Fair 2012, a big wine and liquor importer was profuse in his appreciation for the taste of the product but also pointed out shortcomings which were its clarity and packaging. Same was true for another Chinese wine merchant who was apprehensive for the response of his high end market.

If the product is to do well in the local and foreign markets, its quality and appearance had to be upgraded. The project’s Part 1 involved the development of a new liqueur formulation.  Mechanical and chemical filters were used to improve clarity. Alcohol content was also increased to 18 percent to give it added liveliness.

Various blends were tested. In this effort, the key coffee ingredient was produced following a meticulous process in which the first extract from select Kapeng Barako beans from San Jose growers was brewed with naturally balanced mineral water, qualifying the brew to be of single origin. This was then blended with unfiltered caramelized sugarcane extract and an aromatic fine spirit, and then ripened for several months to develop a distinct bouquet.

For Part 2 of the project, the focus was on the development of the brand and packaging. Various bottle configurations were designed and evaluated. Expert and other external opinions/inputs were also sought. Lessons were drawn from the experience of international makers of alcoholic beverages on bottle design, packaging, presentation, and marketing.

A group of small coffee growers in San Jose, Batangas, the Kapeng Barako Producers at Atibapa Association (KBP Atibapa), was organized as the source of C. liberica beans. Its members stand to benefit from the enterprise once it gets going. At the same time, the bean supply for the coffee liqueur enterprise will be assured. Key members underwent training on good agricultural practices in preparation for certification. The other members plan to replant or rehabilitate their C. liberica coffee farms in anticipation of new demand.


Kapeng Barako coffee liqueur reborn

After two years of product development, the project finally arrived at a top product worthy of a place alongside the established coffee liqueurs of the world.  The proponents settled on a distinct coffee liqueur blend, and box and bottle design. It was re-introduced to the world as “Aldio Barako Coffee Liqueur”.

The Aldio brand is now being sold at SM Lipa, SM Mall of Asia, and SM Megamall. The producer has also participated in events and expos in various localities to showcase Aldio to the public.

Strategic meetings have been held with local wine and liquor stores as well as potential distributors operating in Dubai and Singapore.


With this successful product development, Kapeng Barako will be better known in the Philippines and abroad. The BAR-supported project may be coming to an end but the spirit of Batangas coffee will live on and it is in a nice bottle. ###


For more information:

Mr. Dennis DL. Bihis

Science Research Specialist II/

Research Coordinator

Department of Agriculture

Regional Field Office 4A

Quezon Agricultural Research and Experiment Station

Lagalag, Tiaong, Quezon

Tel/Fax no. (042) 585 7101

Email:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


CVRC develops Mang Bean line to intensify mungbean industry


CVRC develops Mang Bean line to intensify mungbean industry


Cagayan Valley region ranks as one of the top mungbean producing regions contributing about 24 percent to the country’s total output from 2012 to 2016, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority.

To further boost the mungbean industry in the region, in terms of production and consumption, the Department of Agriculture-Cagayan Valley Research Center (DA-CVRC) developed various products from mungbean.

“The development of better and improved mungbean food products can potentially increase mungbean consumption in the domestic market and improve region’s competitiveness in the export market,” shared Vanessa Joy F. Calderon, project leader of the DA-CVRC’s High Value Crops Development Program-Legumes. Thus, the “DA-CVRC initiated the development of mungbean-based food products in 2018. [We] officially launched the brand ‘Mang Bean’ in San Mateo during their 10th Balatong Festival [on] 9 May 2018,” said Calderon.  San Mateo, Isabela is tagged as the “Mungbean Capital of the Philippines.”

Through the support of the Bureau of Agricultural Research, DA-CVRC was able to develop various mungbean products which include: instant mungbean noodles which is made from mungbean flour and packed with dehydrated vegetables and salt; instant mungbean soup which is a five-minute instant ginisang munggo; vacuum fried mungbean sprouts; and, mungbean milk.

As the development of these products has already been conducted, the next stage is product commercialization which includes packaging, labelling, and marketing. “This phase will be beneficial for easy marketing of its future adaptor,” added Calderon.

The Mang Bean line recently bagged the “2nd Best Product Award” during the 2018 Agriculture and Fisheries Technology Forum and Product Exhibition held on Megatrade Hall 2, SM Megamall, Mandaluyong City. The Mang Bean’s mungbean soup was also featured during the AgriLink held on 4-6 October 2018 at the World Trade Center, Manila. ### (Rena S. Hermoso)


© 2021 | Department of Agriculture - Bureau of Agricultural Research