Jalajala is a town situated along Laguna de Bay and most of the people in this town depends their source of living from fishing.  Aside from tilapia and milk fish, bighead carp are among the bulk of fishes caught by the fishermen that causes oversupply and low income for them. With this scenario seen by the members of the Sipsipin Multi-purpose Cooperative (SMPC), they want to help the fishermen and do something valuable to the bighead carp along with the tilapia and milk fish. SMPC is an Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries Organization assisted under Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) of Rizal.

In 2010, a Fish Processing Project was established by the SMPC that started in a kitchen-type smoked fish production using the household-type utensils and sun-dried fish drying.  Seeing the market demand for smoked fish and dried fish, the cooperative decided to improve their production and made it possible with unwavering support from different agencies such as the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Department of Agriculture (DA), and Local Government Unit of Jalajala and Rizal.

Moreover, to continuously innovate products the cooperative also learned to make fish noodles with the help from DTI Rizal CARP. This Fish Noodles was on demand in different countries such as in Vietnam during that time. However, with the difficulty in sustaining the supply and quality of fish in the area, the processing of fish noodles was not sustained.

Yet, these challenges did not stop the cooperative to their goal to improve the lives of their members and people in the community. With perseverance, their skills in processing noodles, and unwavering support from the government agencies, SMPC shifted their business to vegetable noodles processing because they saw the demand for it, and that’s how SMPC’s SIPSARAP Pansit Canton was born. SIPSARAP Pansit Canton is a promising product for it is one of the foods every Filipino love to eat, always present on every occasion, and can be served in different ways.

DTI Rizal CARP continuously supported SMPC by enrolling them to the One Town One Product Next Generation Program of DTI that helped in improving the packaging and labelling of their product. Also, SMPC was able to join different marketing activities such as provincial trade fairs held in different malls such as in Robinsons Place Antipolo, Eastwood Central Plaza, and Waltermart Antipolo that expanded their market and generated more income.

For 2023, SMPC was able to upgrade their technology in processing and enhance their processing facility that made their processing efficient to produce more quality products and cater to the demand of the market. From 30 packs of SIPSARAP Pancit Canton a day, they can now produce 100 packs, and it doubled their income from Php 5,000 to Php 10,000 – 12,000 per month.

Moving forward, SMPC’s goal is to always ensure that they make quality products, which is why they plan to acquire the Food and Drug Administration License to Operate certificate. Also, they hope to expand their market more in Rizal and its nearby provinces. ♦

Date of release: 31 January 2024