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Science chief, DOST officials visit 3 SETUP projects in Ilocos Region

The Department of Science and Technology (DOST), led by Secretary Renato U. Solidum Jr., concluded a visit to three (3) Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program (SETUP) projects in the Ilocos Region on 10 January 2024 in Agoo, La Union and 12 January 12 in Tubao, La Union and Sta, Barbara, Pangasinan, respectively.

The objective of the visit was to showcase the achievements and overall development of the enterprises facilitated by the technical and technological support provided by the DOST. This will serve as showcase of the possible benefits of science, technology, and innovation in improving business operations.

Present with Secretary Solidum Jr. were key officials of the department, that included Assistant Secretary Rodolfo J. Calzado Jr. and Undersecretary for Research & Development Dr. Leah J. Buendia. The delegation also included representatives from various DOST divisions, such as Special Projects Division, Research & Development, Financial Management Services Division, Administrative and Legal Services Division, and the Commission on Audit.

Accompanying the DOST officials were Dr. Teresita A. Tabaog, DOST-1 Regional Director together with Assistant Regional Director for Field Operations; -1180 P. Libunao; PSTO-La Union Provincial Director Jonathan M. Viernes; PSTO-Pangasinan Provincial

Director Engr. Arnold C. Santos; Supervising SRS Engr. Edison M. Acosta; Supervising SRS Engr. Bernadine P. Suniega and other DOST-1 staff.

The three (3) SETUP projects were Safetech by Modulhaus Inc. in Agoo, La Union; JC Laroco Ricemill in Tubao, La Union; and Nutridense Food Manufacturing Corporation in Sta. Barbara, Pangasinan, where their accomplishments and developments, as well as success were shown, thereby underscoring the possible collaborations and positive impact of the technical and technological assistance provided by DOST under SETUP.

JC Laroco Rice Mill, having graduated from SETUP in 2016, is currently in the second phase of SETUP 2021. The focus is on upgrading existing rice milling equipment and incorporating DOST’s Iron Fortified Rice (IFR) technology. On the other hand, Nutridense Food Manufacturing Corporation (NFMC), located in Sta. Barbara, Pangasinan, excels as a technology adopter of the DOST-Food Nutrition Research Institute, contributing significantly to the production of complementary and emergency food products. Moreover, Safetech by Modulhaus Inc. in Agoo, La Union, showcased adaptability by transitioning to the production of eco-friendly three-ply surgical face masks, exemplifying innovation and social responsibility as a SETUP beneficiary.

The project visit underscores DOST’s commitment to fostering innovation, supporting Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), and driving economic development through science, technology, and innovation. The success stories of these SETUP projects serve as a testament to the transformative vision and strategic interventions that the agency offers, reflecting a positive impact on businesses and communities.#

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