Not many can boast of finding credible sources of loans with low monthly interest rates, especially for small farmers who are struggling to keep up with the constant and growing challenges in the agri industry.
Yet, this is the welcome boon being offered by the Pangi Multi-Purpose Cooperative (PAMULCO) for its members engaged in various production projects in the town of Maitum in Sarangani Province and surrounding communities.
Through the years, PAMULCO and LANDBANK have been helping farmers gain continuous access to ready credit to meet their daily needs, allowing them to cope and recover from the challenges in farming.
PAMULCO began with only four employees in 1991 with P25,000 on hand. Today, operating mainly in Brgy. Pangi in Maitum, Sarangani Province, it has 37 on the regular payroll, with 809 total members.
It has financed a collective estimate of around 500 hectares for palay, and 280 hectares for corn. This is on top of its regular agri-trading and consumer store operations that cater to its farmer-members and general public.
All these endeavors came to fruition with the financing it started to avail from LANDBANK that same year. Through LANDBANK’s rediscounting line, PAMULCO was able to bring interest rates for members’ loans down to 12% per annum.
The Bank’s low interest rates for this type of credit facility is contingent upon financial conduits, such as rural banks and cooperatives like PAMULCO, to pass on the same beneficial low interest rates to its eligible borrower members with convenient repayment schedules.
At only 1% per month, farmers can easily see the glaring contrast to seeking loans from loan sharks and some local traders who charge 20% interest for the same period. Additionally, the Co-op’s income is given back to farmer members in the form of annual dividends and patronage refunds.
The Cooperative was also able to purchase hauling trucks and upgrade its rice mill that can now process 60 bags an hour, a step up from the 20-25 bags its old machinery used to churn out.
In 2018, PAMULCO was able to purchase palay worth P52.42 million, most of which came from Lambayong, Sultan Kudarat. The Co-op also took care of the processing and other post-harvest requirements to market the farmers’ rice. The trucks kept raw inventory low and quick-moving, thus avoiding wastage of hard-earned palay.
Having experienced the struggle firsthand and the Bank’s timely and unwavering assistance, PAMULCO General Manager Ronald C. Briones, Sr. attests that LANDBANK fulfills its mandate.
”Patunay ng di matatawarang dedikasyon na tulungang mapaunlad ang pamumuhay ng mga magsasaka at kanayunan,” he adds.
LANDBANK has always been supportive of the cooperative industry’s efforts in uplifting the socio-economic condition of small farmers.
“We believe in the crucial role of cooperatives in strengthening the capabilities of farmers to improve their income. By working with cooperatives, we create more sustainable growth opportunities, and thus improve the economic status of their members and their communities at large,” said LANDBANK President and CEO Cecilia C. Borromeo.
Now 28 years strong and counting, PAMULCO’s relationship with LANDBANK remains a valuable aspect in helping open necessary channels for small farmers to engage competitively, gain more leverage with their marketing prospects, and become empowered players toward a sustainable food supply chain.
COMMENT DISCLAIMER: Reader comments posted on this Web site are not in any way endorsed by Manila Standard. Comments are views by manilastandard.net readers who exercise their right to free expression and they do not necessarily represent or reflect the position or viewpoint of manilastandard.net. While reserving this publication’s right to delete comments that are deemed offensive, indecent or inconsistent with Manila Standard editorial standards, Manila Standard may not be held liable for any false information posted by readers in this comments section.