Monday, July 2, 2012

US assists 10 Mindanao companies to meet global export standards

By Jorie C. Valcorza

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Misamis Oriental, June 29 (PIA) -- United States Ambassador Harry K. Thomas Jr. recognized 10 companies in Mindanao that obtained the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) and International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 17025 certifications. 

In a press statement, this recognition came following assistance from the United States Agency for international development. 

HACCP is a system that ensures food production meets safety requirements to protect public health, whereas ISO 17025 makes sure that laboratories that test products meet certain requirements. 

The 10 companies were Vjandep Foods, Perfectly Natural Herbs Corp., Lucille’s Food Products, Renova Foods, San Isidro Cooperative, Lao Integrated Farms, Magpet Agro-Industrial Cooperative, Magsilum ARC Cooperative, Fast Laboratories, and Philexport Quality Control Laboratory. 

Present at the event were The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Philippines Mission Director Gloria Steele, Mindanao Development Authority Chairperson Secretary Luwalhati Antonino and Department of Trade and Industry Officer in-Charge Linda Boniao. 

“By meeting the stringent food quality and safety requirements for HACCP certification, you increase the prospects of entering new export markets and selling to the world’s most discriminating buyers,” Thomas said during the awarding ceremony at N Hotel. 

Since the launching of certification assistance project, USAID has successfully assisted 24 companies in obtaining HACCP and ISO 17025 certification. Total collective increase in sales of these companies is estimated at $20 million. 

“The U.S. government, through USAID, is enabling Mindanao firms and business support organizations to expand exports and create jobs and opportunities to help the region achieve broad-based and inclusive economic growth,” Steele said. (US Embassy Manila Public Affairs Section/PIA 10)

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