DOST 8 CY 2021 Regional SETUP PRAISE Awardee Hails from Samar

Monday, September 27, 2021

Besting the six (6) entries from each province in the region, AJ Ocasla Enterprises, a rice processing firm operating in Sta. Rita, Samar and a two-time SETUP beneficiary, was chosen as the 2021 Regional SETUP PRAISE Awardee on September 3, 2021, The firm earned the award for its productivity, resiliency, agility, innovativeness, sustainability, and excellence even at the time of COVID-19 pandemic. 

The firm was able to avail of the DOST8 Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program (SETUP) twice, in June 2016 and in May 2021, to upgrade and increase its manufacturing capability and improve product quality with the addition of recirculating grain dryer technology with the use of the rice husk as fuel. The three (3) units of 12-ton capacity dryers enabled the firm to meet the dried palay raw material requirement of its rice milling machine. The firm increased its output by 63.32% and its sales by 99.32%. It has doubled its market with the addition of ten (10) new markets to its five (5) existing markets prior to the interventions. It has also generated five (5) additional employment for the local community. 

AJ Ocasla has served as a primary disaster/pandemic responder as a food distributor not only in Samar, but across Region 8. The firm is giving credit lines and services to government agencies, notably during times of disaster in order to deliver relief goods/food packs to the region's affected families. The DOST SETUP PRAISE Award for MSMEs is presented annually to recognize exemplary SETUP beneficiaries around the country. Initially provincial nominees are evaluated and then a Regional Winner is chosen to compete in the National Level. The National SETUP PRAISE Awardee will be declared during the 2021 National Science and Technology Week celebrations this coming November 2021

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