The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Region 4A based in Los Banos, Laguna is on high gear as it pushes for full adoption the services of the CALABARZON Food Solutions Hub or C-FoSH located at the Laguna State Polytechnic University in Sta. Cruz, Laguna.
C-FoSH is a beneficiary of the Share Services Facility (SSF) program that is being implemented nationwide aimed to empower the micro, small, and medium enterprises or MSMEs. The program is a partnership among DOST, the Department of Trade and Industry, and the Laguna State Polytechnic University in Sta. Cruz, Laguna were the facility is located.
One important cooperator of the C-FoSH is the Association of Laguna Food Processors or ALAFOP that include among its members, Bugong Foods Corporation, Escaba Sweets, Forest Wood Garden, Sustalicious, Costales Farms, and Villa Socorro.
According to DOST Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña the C-FoSH will be able to create added value products that could command better prices because of its high quality standard that can compete in the international market. C-FoSH serves as a capacity building venture that empowers micro enterprises to avail of the state-of-the-art and industry compliant manufacturing plant that conforms to high grade food safety. The facility will enable the food processors from Laguna and nearby provinces to increase their production capacity and produce export quality products. The C-FoSH will also serve as a laboratory for food innovation and provide support to entrepreneurs to come up with new products that are needed in the market.
The LSPU facility has several equipment, such as the large scale spray dryer that can convert fresh food produce to powder form like pineapple that can be made into instant powder juice drink. There is also the packaging machine that allows the printing of product labels faster and with more consistent quality.
Operational since 2013, the SSF program promotes inclusive growth particularly in the regions with the establishment of some 1,702 SSFs nationwide with accumulated funding of Php 776.53 million from 2013-2014. In the process the program has so far benefitted 17,095 MSMEs and 72, 619 potential businessmen all over the country.