CALABANGA CAMARINES SUR. The Department of Agriculture Bicol Corn Program in cooperation with the Local Government Unit of Calabanga conducted a one day Hands-on training on the Operations and Maintenance of Village Type Dryer (VTD) for corn on April 4, 2017 at barangay Manguiring this municipality. The training aimed to familiarize the participants on the operation and maintenance of the VTD and to learn the principles of its operation.
At least 32 operators representing municipalities of Polangui, Daraga, Ligao, Guinobatan in Albay and Baao, Buhi, Calabanga, Iriga, Goa and Naga in Camarines Sur attended the said activity . These municipalities have existing corn processing centers.
Speakers were Dr. Manolito Bulaong, Vice President for Research, Agricom and Engr. Roderic Verena Science Research Specialist of Philmech. Bulaong pointed out that only DA Bicol conducted this kind of training to sustain the operation of VTDs in various areas in the region. There is indeed a need for trained technician to operate the said drying equipment to lessen the cost of repairs and prevent further damage, he said.
According to Roderic Verena Research Specialist from Philmech, It is important to know the principles on the operation of a village type dryer. Those who will operate are the ones who are trained to ensure safety of the equipment and a sound policy should be formulated for the benefit of the community he said. He added that based on analysis, the quality standard for food consumption (aflatoxin present in corn grain) is 20% parts per billion (ppb) and 50% ppb for animal feeds.
A hands on training was conducted later in the afternoon at the VTD site. Participants were taught on how to operate the equipment particularly on trouble shooting and proper maintenance. It is expected that, with its maximum usage, the corn farmers of this municipality will be capacitated to produce good quality corn grains and become more productive. (B. Nuñez)