LANDBANK, South Cotabato co-op join hands anew to boost pineapple production

LANDBANK Senior Vice President Charlotte I. Conde (2nd from left) and Laconon 100 Multi-Purpose Cooperative (LMPC) Chairperson Rhoda O. Pecadizo (3rd from left) lead the signing of a P212.8-million loan agreement in Surallah, South Cotabato, on 25 November 2022 to finance the co-op’s pineapple production and other agri projects. Joining them from Dole Philippines, Inc. (Dolefil) are Vice President Reynaldo C. Doria (4th from left) and Finance and Supply Chain Director Jesusa Natividad-Rojas (rightmost) for the renewal of another pineapple growership tie-up agreement.

SURALLAH, South Cotabato – The Land Bank of the Philippines (LANDBANK) and the Laconon 100 Multi-Purpose Cooperative (LMPC) have signed a P212.8-million loan to finance the co-op’s pineapple production and agricultural modernization efforts, to help sustain the growth of the local pineapple industry in the province.

The financial support is expected to boost the production of pineapple farms managed by LMPC, with a combined area of over 1,400 hectares in the Municipalities of T’boli, Surallah, Lake Sebu and Banga.

“LANDBANK remains committed to empowering agricultural cooperatives nationwide via accessible financing. Through co-ops like LMPC, we are able to extend a wide range of services and opportunities to farmers and fishers, while contributing to advance local food security,” said LANDBANK President and CEO Cecilia C. Borromeo.

Of the total LANDBANK loan, LMPC will utilize P200 million as working capital to support the production requirements of its 445 pineapple farmer-members, including the purchase of farm inputs, while P7.8 million will finance the purchase of two (2) farm tractors and one (1) monitoring vehicle.

The vehicles will be used for land preparation and field monitoring to effectively respond to urgent farm needs. The remaining P5-million will be allocated for LMPC’s cassava and corn trading activities.

LMPC dealt with financial difficulties due to the unexpected closure of its anchor firm and primary pineapple produce buyer in 2003, but was able to recover with LANDBANK’s credit assistance in 2017.

Sa lahat ng pagsubok na dumating sa LMPC, hindi kami iniwan ng LANDBANK. Kami ay muling nakabangon mula sa pagkalugmok at ngayon ay mayroon na kaming mahigit sa P200 million na loan line para patuloy na maserbisyuhan ang aming mga miyembro at makapagbigay ng hanapbuhay sa komunidad,” said LMPC Chairperson Rhoda O. Pecadizo.

LMPC was able to post steady growth in net income and grow its membership with LANDBANK’s timely assistance. The co-op likewise successfully paid 100% of its previously restructured loan with the Bank in 2021 amounting to P32.5 million.

During the loan signing event, LANDBANK, LMPC and Dole Philippines, Inc. (Dolefil) also renewed their pineapple growership tie-up covered by a Tripartite Memorandum of Agreement, which was initially implemented in 2017.

Under the agreement, LANDBANK will provide credit assistance and other loan support services to LMPC, with Dolefil serving as the exclusive market of the co-op’s pineapple produce while extending technical assistance throughout the whole production cycle.