How to be a Confident Pig Raiser with a Heart? 1

Who would have thought that an Aeronautical Engineer by profession finds himself madly and deeply into pig farming and chooses it over what he is more than qualified for? Well for this man, his heart’s rhythm tracks a cost. If he doesn’t follow it, he would have to spend the rest of his life wishing he had. That’s why, he did.

Manong Vic V. Agapay is one of Kuya Amblit’s siblings, his “Utol” (Read Kuya Ambit’s success story.) and is also a native from Liliw, Laguna. Influenced by his parents and hisUtol’s achievement, he benchmarked on establishing a semi-commercial farm immediately after his engineering journey. The farm supports his family’s needs and serves his ticket in fulfilling his responsibility as a father.

His and his Utol’s fate traversed similar path. His business venture also went through challenges and falls. The moment that he followed what his heart speaks of and chose to commit on pig farming business instead of practicing his degree was the same moment highly contested by his family. Norman, his eldest son, reiterated that his father has totally ignored his real profession and the thought makes the family more hesitant on his decision. But when they noticed and beheld how happy and fulfilled their father in doing the business, they immediately gave their approval and full support. The support that transcended even when Manong Vic ran for Municipal Councilor back in 2007 to 2010 and took oath as public servant in the same duration. That exact same support which he held on when his and his Utol’s farms were in panic due to an epidemic. He lost animals and took time to recover. Only his family’s support gave him thousands of reasons to not give up and keep fighting no matter how complex ‘ahead’ will be.

Glad and overwhelmed with the support and love from his family and friends, he continuously searched for ways and alternatives to bring back his farm’s production and other means to earn. Back in 2014, together with his Utol, he enrolled in Sustainable Pig Farming and Lactic Acid Bacteria Serum (LABS) at ATI-ITCPH. Thirsty for more relevant knowledge and exposure, Manong Vic, himself, also attended the one-day Artificial Insemination (AI). These courses further strengthened their technical know-how on pig production which then was translated to confidence in doing the business. Though both differed in their management styles, still the technologies they were able to acquire from trainings at ATI-ITCPH best served their purposes as evident in their farms now. Aiming to discover his own formula for his piggery, he deviated from what his Utol used to practice, instead, strictly applied farm recording and Artificial Insemination (AI). After his AI training, he established an AI laboratory which provided him additional returns. He can earn P800.00 for the service and P300.00 for the processed semen. He was surprised to see how a one day training on AI helped him increase production. Just recently, he ventured on meat processing, another technology he got from the Center.

His farm now earns P20,000.00 to P30,000.00 from provision of AI services only. Good thing, his five sons, undoubtedly inspired by his passion and commitment in the pig farming business, assisted him in servicing AI to all farm clients. His sons now go hands-on in managing the farm. His influence has even gone through the point that all his sons dream of having their own farms and plan to take same trainings at ATI-ITCPH in the near future. The thought makes him teary-eyed for he never expected that his love for pigs would grow and would even plant seeds to his children. What made it relatively fulfilling for him is the fact that he was able to touch his children’s lives through his own fatherly means.

Meanwhile, Manong Vic sincerely hoped that the influence would not just be within the family and his house’s grounds. He greatly believed that although he’s no longer into politics, his community deserves to know the benefits and potential of pig farming. This he included in his bucket of missions to accomplish in years to come.

Finally, when asked why does he choose pig farming over politics?

“Mas masaya sa baboy kaysa pulitika. May pera sa baboy. Ayyy biro mo eh sa ilalim na laang ng banig nilalagay, at maraming coins! Masakit-sakit higaan pero ramdam na ramdam mo naman ang iyong pinagpaguran”, he proudly answered.

by Dexter Pagcaliwagan, ati.da.gov.ph/itcph