• AsiaDHRRA taps NATCCO to help Farmers’ Co-op

    EASTERN SAMAR – Many agricultural cooperatives fail due to the inability of its members – mostly farmers – to run its operations.  But for a farmers’ cooperative named Island of Samar & Leyte Agriculture Cooperative (ISLACO), the future looks bright. Read More
  • CDA now under DTI

    MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte ordered the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA) to be placed under the Department of Trade & Industry (DTI).  Malacanang Palace issued Executive Order 67 on October 31.   It will be recalled that just on his Read More
  • First Co-op Chess Tourney in History

    MAKATI CITY – More than 200 chess players battled wills over the Chess Board on Sunday, October 22, at the First Co-op Cup Chess Tournament held at the Alphaland Southgate Mall, with Max Dave Tellor of Adamson University taking the Read More
  • ACCU Founder Rekindles Raiffeisen Ideals

    Mr. Andrew So, one of the founders of the Association of Asian Confederation of Credit Unions gave this inspirational speech at the 2018 ACCU Forum in September in Manila.   Social Justice is a moral principle and a moral value. Read More
  • Co-op Month Celebrated Nationwide!

    Cooperators all over the country celebrated the Cooperative Month this October, culminating in the National Cooperative Day on October 20.   According to the Co-operative Month Secretariat that collates nationwide data and monitors social media posts under the hashtag “#1coopnation”, Read More
  • Co-op Resiliency & Sustainable Development

    COOP-NATCCO Rep. Anthony Bravo delivered the following Privilege Speech in Congress last  October 8.   Mr. Speaker, honorable colleagues, I rise today as we again honor our cooperatives across the country for being resilient amidst the growing inflation and other Read More
  • Duterte Meets Leaders on 103rd Year of Philippine Co-ops

    MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte met with 250 co-op leaders on October 17 in the Malacanang Palace, to hear co-op issues and concerns, and hear proposals on how co-ops and Government can work together to accelerate nation-building.   This is Read More
  • First Movers Ink Contractual Solidarity

    CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY – The NATCCO Network has moved closer to its Vision of becoming an integrated federation of co-ops as eight leaders signed the Contractual Solidarity Agreement.  The simple ceremony is  considered to be the highlight of the Read More
  • Let's Get Digital!

    USAID’s Mamerto Tangonan gave a talk entitled The National Retail Payment System & the Digital Finance Landscape in the Philippines, delivered at the NATCCO Co-op Leaders Congress in Limketkai Luxe Hotel in Cagayan de Oro City for all co-ops to Read More
  • First Co-op Cup Chess Tournament October 21

    Excellent Peoples' MPC and NATCCO Network recently signed an Agreement to hold the first chess tournament for co-ops.   In the spirit of Cooperative Solidarity, the First Co-op Chess Cup Tournament for co-operators is scheduled for October 21 with theme Read More
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What to do with all that Lovely Money

Retired Major General Gilbert Llanto of ACDI Multi-Purpose Cooperative in Taguig City was invited to speak at the recent Agricultural Cooperative Conference in Quezon City.  Every co-op leader should read this, and have the same conviction. 
 
As you very well know, our co-op has lots of resources.  We took on franchises of McDonald’s, Chow King, and 7-11 (a few years ago).  These enterprises served as “cash cows” – raking in more money for the cooperative.
 
But we came to think about it, the money of our members was enriching all the more the pockets of George Yang  (franchise owner of McDonald’s in the Philippines), Tony Tan Caktiong (owner /founder of Jollibee) and the Paternos (owners of the 7-11 franchise in the Philippines).
 
As a cooperative, we cannot do that.  So as stewards of the money of the soldiers who are members of ACDI, the co-op leadership decided to divest a few years ago. And we actually made decent returns by doing that.
 
So what are co-ops to do with all that money?
 
From what we have learned from today’s Agricultural Co-operative Conference, there is clearly a mismatch in the demand and supply in the agriculture market in the country.  Agriculture is controlled by a few, the oligarchs and the traders, while the farmers are landless and starving paupers.
 
There is clearly a need for co-ops to act.
 
So ACDI Multi-Purpose Cooperative is very willing to join that effort.  We started out trying to work out the co-op mart as a logistic distributor throughout the country.  So we are still searching for the solution. We’d be very happy to be part of this project being spearheaded by the CDA Chairman Orlando Ravanera.
 
Yung sinabi ni Prof Sammy Billanes – that there is much rice production potential in the country and that the only problem is that it is controlled by few – it will require so much investment if we implement it nationwide. 
 
And we are willing to join that federation that will undertake and bankroll the project.
 
We want to see the good practices of the primary co-ops, but more could be attained if we band together.  There is value in our strength.  With 14 million members, and 26,000 cooperatives nationwide, we cannot go wrong if we really become unified and one in purpose. Ang requirements natin, I looked around in supermarkets, there is nothing that cannot be produced by the cooperative!
 
There is nothing that cannot be distributed by the cooperatives.  
 
There is nothing that we cannot make.  Every member and every primary cooperative . . .
 
So there is really a need to cooperate among co-ops. I know it is quite difficult and we have been struggling in that area because there are individual differences.  That is all part of the territory but we just have to get on with it.  Our resources will not be enough if we do it alone.  We have realized that a long time ago.  
 
We cannot provide for our members and we cannot expand.  In the case of ACDI, our membership is limited to members of the AFP and so there is a limit to our membership.  But we can have more surrogate members by joining a federation – and that means the federation is a member multiplier.  
 
It should apply specifically to agricultural co-ops that have to band together.
 
Retired General Llanto is Chairman of the ACDI Multi-Purpose Cooperative in Taguig City. ACDI MPC members are military personnel, and is one of the largest co-ops in the Philippines in terms of Assets operating in 108 offices nationwide.
 
ACDI MPC was the Most Outstanding Large Primary Cooperative in the Philippines by the CDA, a testament to sustainable growth, contributions to people empowerment, and nation-building.
 

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