The Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (DOST-PCAARRD) Livestock Research Division Director, Dr. Synan S. Baguio, together with Dr. Ronilo O. De Castro, Sr., DOST-PCAARRD Science Research Specialist (SRS), and Mr. Roldan Dela Cerna, DA RFO XI SRS, visited the USeP Tagum-Mabini Campus, Mabini Unit on July 28, 2023, to discuss the proposal for research funding for the establishment of itikPINAS breeding facilities in USeP Mabini Unit, Tagum-Mabini Campus.
At the conference, Dr. Baguio emphasized the necessity of encouraging USeP to expand the production of ItikPINAS to increase production efficiency. He also wanted to see it grow in USeP while maintaining sustainability and continual progress. With this project, the marketing aspect should be deliberate, so it is a challenge to encourage entrepreneurs to engage with it. Dr. Baguio also pointed out that it is high time for the development of the duck industry in the Davao Region. Hence, the Tagum-Mabini Campus Chancellor, Dr. Cecar A. Limbaga, Jr., stressed the commitment or support of the USeP management for these initiatives.
ItikPINAS is an improved Philippine Mallard Duck breed developed by DOST-PCAARRD and the National Swine and Poultry Research and Development Center-Bureau of Animal Industry (NSPRDC-BAI) through strategic breeding and selection.
ItikPINAS will be part of the USeP Income Generating Project (IGP), and it aims to allocate this project to different places and sectors to produce high-quality ItikPINAS eggs. This duck is resistant to diseases and suited to the local climate. Therefore, mortality rates are substantially lower. An ItikPINAS egg consistently weighs 65 g, which matched the requirements for balut processing, but it will not limit itself to that, as they are planning for the new market by developing new products like leche flan made from duck eggs. USeP will then start the motion toward the new dynamic of breeding selection of ItikPINAS and innovate more new products to be generated.
The group has made an on-site visit to the three (3) prospect areas in Mabini Unit where the breeding and production facilities for ItikPINAS can be established once a research project is approved by DOST-PCAARRD for financial support. This activity was headed by Dr. Cecar A. Limbaga, Jr., the Chancellor of USeP Tagum-Mabini Campus, along with Dr. Shirley S. Villanueva, Vice President for RDE, Dr. Cecirly G. Puig, Acting Dean of the CARS, Dr. Emelie G. Pelicano, BSA Program Head, Dr. Angie R. Poliquit, BSA Faculty, and an Animal Breeding and Genetics Expert, together with the other USeP Mabini Unit Faculty and Staff.