• Alex Raquepo: Ilocos Region's Co-op Man

    Rare are those who have been steeped in cooperative principles in their youth and continue to do so decades later.  Alexander B. Raquepo is among that rare breed.   Alex hails from Sta. Cruz, Ilocos Sur and is the eledest Read More
  • COOP-NATCCO Partylist Thumbs Down Divorce Bill

    QUEZON CITY --  After consultations with co-op leaders, Coop-NATCCO Partylist Representatives Anthony M. Bravo and Sabiniano Canama voted against the Divorce Bill.   After quoting the Bible on social media, Rep. Bravo said: “Bilang isang Kristiyano, ito ang aking personal Read More
  • Millennials Own Stage at Co-op Leaders Congress

    CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY – In Filipino culture, young people are told to listen to their elders.  But at the recent 16th Co-op Leaders Congress held at the Limketkai Luxe Hotel, it was the other way around.     Millennials comprised most Read More
  • 3rd Tagum Youth Camp Fosters Bonds & Learning

    TAGUM CITY -- Seventy-eight teen-aged strangers turned friends as they participated in Tagum Coop’s Youth Laboratory 3rd Summer Youth Camp last May 4-5, 2018 at the Energy Park. The two-day-one-night camp had the theme “Bring the Change! Be the Youth Leader Read More
  • GA Pushes Integration, Technology, Youth, Enterprise

    CAGAYAN DE ORO – The NATCCO Network ended the 41st General Assembly and Leaders’ Congress on a high note, as the leadership of one of the largest co-op federations in the country pushed for integration, the use of technology to improve Read More
  • Guideco Becomes Town Center thru Pinoy Coop ATM

    Guimbal, ILOILO -- This quaint town is a coastal fourth class municipality of 33,820 people.    Its 9 kilometers of scenic shoreline has attracted tourists, an industry that supplements its citizens’ agricultural livelihood.   In April 1993, the Southern Iloilo Development Read More
  • St. Vincent Ferrer Parish MPC Wins Bagwis Award

    ODIONGAN, Romblon –  NATCCO Network member St. Vincent Ferrer Parish Multi-Purpose Cooperative recently received the Bronze DTI-Bagwis Award for the excellent operation of its retail stores.   The Department of Trade and Industry, through the award, “gives due recognition to Read More
  • Co-op Opens Gas Station in Tagbilaran City

    TAGBILARAN CITY -- The Bohol Community Multi-Purpose Cooperative which has 1,000 members inaugurated on February 27 its own gasoline station.  Jannete Romero and Melchor Daniel, BCMPC’s Manager and Chairman, respectively, led the opening of the cooperative’s Phoenix Gasoline Station, the first Read More
  • Ang Hindi Nauulingan

    May kasabihan na: “Walang humahawak ng palayok na hindi naulingan.”  Dumating ang panahon na ginamit ito patungkol sa mga taong may kinalaman sa mga usaping salapi.  Tanggap ng marami na kapag pera ang pinag-uusapan, halos lahat na lang ata ay Read More
  • CDA Issues Order For Nutriwealth to Cease & Desist

    QUEZON CITY -- The Cooperative Development Authority (CDA) has ordered Nutriwealth Multi-Purpose Cooperative (NWMPC) to 1) stop accepting deposits from members and non-members, 2) return all deposits to the depositors, and 3) stop establishing and operating satellite offices without the prior 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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