Under a rainy morning on April 7, 2022, with a sheet of gray sky and with most of the women with gray hairs in attendance, DOST PSTC SIQUIJOR took the initiative to demonstrate the use of a pasteurizer granted to the Kababayen-an Alang sa Paglambo sa Nasudnong Industriya sa Gatas (KAPANIG) of Cangmunag, San Juan, Siquijor, incorporated under Technical Training On The Use of the Newly-Acquired DOST Pasteurizer.
Provincial Director Engr. Mario E. de la Peńa began with repeatedly reminding KAPANIG members not to turn on the pasteurizer without water and to turn it off and to disconnect it from the main supply before cleaning the milk pot. Against a total age of 671 years from ten (10) women members who were there in the morning, the reminder served as a polite antidote to occasional forgetfulness in them and importantly as a safety measure of their persons and their property.
Since its inception around 2003, KAPANIG’s sterilization of its raw milk was done without the aid of a technology. Members had to use big kettles over gas burners to perform the process of pasteurization. Starting today, they are now into a safer, more reliable, and more secure way of killing pathogens considered as bad bacteria found in raw milk.
Victoria Maglasang, Chairwoman of Kapanig said: “We are lucky here in our association. DOST’s intervention through its provision of technology and technical advisory has made our life as milk processors become lighter and easier. I think most of the members are old and I find all what DOST has given us to be a gracious act of valuing us women and our capacity to make our lives productive.”
Eutequia Cenas, one member of KAPANIG, echoed: “We are simply happy. Our milk products have been our lifeblood. Thank you, DOST. We would always take heart that because of KAPANIG, we as members have sent our children and grandchildren to finish college.”
With the characteristic humor of Engr. Mario E. de la Peńa, the cold atmosphere turned into a warm learning session. He said: “Do you know the German word for a milk pot?” “Well, it’s called milchbehalter,” as he continued while he rattled his tongue with the word, sounding so strange to the burst of laughter from the members. “I am happy to be with you this morning. I am very proud that DOST has been a constant supporter to women’s advocacies like yours — with your livelihood undertaking for processing dairy products. Your value as women is indispensable. For around twenty years, KAPANIG has survived. And that only tells how much you have seriously poured in your effort and time to your vision. I salute you as women of development.”
Presently, KAPANIG is processing around 26-30 liters of raw milk every day sourced out from holstein cows.
The two-and-a-half-hour session ended with light snacks on milk and biscuits. It was still drizzling outside and the women had to stay as they still prepared for orders of bottles of milk under a supplemental feeding program sponsored by one government agency.
By: Jose Aldous R. Arbon II (SRA-IO)