Known to be a visionary and forward-thinking firm whose goals are set to produce the best food products in the country, Jocyl’s Food Products started its humble beginnings by producing the usual processed meat in the province of Aklan. Today, it has expanded to producing organic products and delicacies with 3 branches in Aklan and 1 branch in Iloilo City while reselling nationwide.

While this is considered to be a success in its proliferating development, Jocyl Militar, owner of Jocyl’s Food Products, started to consider adopting technological innovations to improve firm’s products, services, and operations, and increase its productivity and competitiveness.

DOST’s SETUP assistance

Through the Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program (SETUP) Innovation-Enabling Fund (iFund) of the Department of Science and Technology or DOST, the firm was allowed to establish its own production processes for twice already.

The SETUP iFund is a nationwide strategy encouraging and assisting micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to address their technical problems and improve productivity and efficiency.

The firm’s first project under SETUP iFund focused on the needed equipment to adhere to the Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) set by the National Meat Inspection Service. The equipment included a meat grinder, meat mixer, and stainless steel table.

“Through the help of DOST, we were able to purchase equipment, a GMP certification, and we were classified as an accredited Meat Processing Plant in Region VI,” shared Militar.

As the firm continues to be receptive in addressing customer requirements, it availed of its second SETUP iFund assistance, which focused on the improvement of its products’ packaging and labeling. Through the program, the firm was able to purchase a vacuum sealer, poly clip machine, and meat tumbler.

The firm was able to increase its production, sales, and market reach through constant upgrading and innovation despite the pandemic where its product volume increased by 50% and product sales increased by at least 20%.

Resiliency amidst pandemic

During the unprecedented pandemic, the world of business was indeed profoundly affected thus most were forced to disrupt their services.

Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and limited pork supply due to the African Swine Fever, the firm was able to continue its operations by banking on its established website and social media and exploring on the mobile-centric marketplace. Moreover, it also maintained all of its employees by opening delivery services and coordinating with government agencies and private institutions to access their services.

The firm also formulated a business continuity plan to continue in providing products and deliver services during the period of disruption or inevitable circumstances.

“We have close monitoring of our monthly performance in terms of sales, in terms of production so we know what to do next to be able to respond to the challenges that we are facing,” testified Militar in their internal initiatives during the pandemic.

The firm is currently accredited by the Food and Drug Administration and regularly sends its products for analysis at DOST Region VI. Last 2016, it was also awarded as Healthy Workplace by the Department of Health. (JJMoleño/SSalazar/DRGTibubos/DOST VI-KMU)