In celebration of the 41st National Disability Prevention Rehabilitation Week, the Department of Agriculture-Western Visayas conducted the Agri-Forum and Technology Demonstration on Oyster Mushroom Production and Value-Added Products at Natures Village Resort, Talisay City, Negros Occidental, July 18.

Forty-five (45) Persons with Disability (PWD) from the towns of Kabankalan City, E.B. Magalona and Cadiz City, Negros Occidental participated in the activity.

“Department of Agriculture is committed in providing suitable services and interventions to all sectors and stakeholders and this includes the PWD sector,” said Agricultural Provincial Coordinating Officer (APCO) for Negros Occidental Jenito Balairos.

With the booming industry of mushroom, Balairos believes that the participants will have an easy access to additional training, market linkages and availability of materials needed for the mushroom production.
DAWV Elderly and PWD Program Alternate Focal Person Jenny Babe P. Gigato encouraged all participants to listen to the lectures and in the demonstration of the value-added products.

“Every year, the Department of Agriculture, through the Local Operations Management Section conducts training intended only for the PWD and senior citizens,” she added.

Mr. Eden B. Panisales, in-charge of the Mushroom Program on-Station modules, discussed the technologies and opportunities, and presented successful mushroom growers in western visayas.

He said that growing mushroom is easy and very applicable to PWDs because it requires less movement and space.
In the afternoon, Panisales demonstrated two products from oyster mushrooms, crispy mushroom and ice cream.
Meanwhile, Mr. Joel dela Peña, PWD from Cadiz City, Negros Occidental, challenged other participants to replicate the technologies discussed during the Agri-Forum.

“The Government cannot accommodate all of us to work in their offices, therefore, we have to make ways in order to provide for ourselves. And, this is one way to support our needs,” he added.

Each participant received 3 mushroom fruiting bags and information materials on mushroom production.