John Dominic Salamanca is a 29-year-old farmer from Maria Aurora, Aurora who dreamed of establishing a poultry agribusiness. With the assistance of the Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Credit Policy Council (DA-ACPC), he was able to turn his dream into reality.
John Dominic chose to start a business in the chicken industry after seeing the lack of supply of chicken meat and production of healthy food in their province of Aurora amid the pandemic. What sets his business idea apart from others is his choice of free-range chicken meat type production. Instead of being confined in cages, his chickens will be free to roam in pasturing areas to consume grass, insects, and worms instead of feeds making up their diet.
Needing funds to jumpstart his business, the young agripreneur discovered DA-ACPC’s Kapital Access for Young Agripreneurs (KAYA) program through the Kabataang Agribusiness Facebook group that he was a member of. Under the KAYA loan program, borrowers between 18 to 30 years old and graduates of formal or non-formal education can avail zero-interest loans of up to Php 500,000 for their agribusiness, payable up to five (5) years.
After applying, John Dominic attended seminars in creating business plans and monitored his application status through the ACPC Access website, an online application portal for ACPC credit programs. Through the Alay Credit Cooperative in Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija, ACPC’s partner lending conduit, John Dominic was able to loan P500,000 for his poultry business.
According to John Dominic, KAYA is a big help in encouraging the youth youth to go back and love agriculture. “Dahil sa ganitong oportunidad, mababago ang mindset ng kabataan pagdating sa agrikultura… mas lalo pa nilang mamahalin ang pagsasaka at pangingisda,” he said.
“Huwag tayong mapapagod. Dahil unang una, tayo ang bubuhay sa ating kapwa mamamayang Pilipino. Ang pagsasaka ay hindi dapat nakatuon para lang sa pansariling interes. Dapat ay mag-produce tayo ng mga produkto at pagkain para sa mga mamamayang Pilipino,” he added.