Verifying the compliances of the Ilocos Region’s contender to the technical requirements of the nationwide Search for Outstanding Corn Cluster Management Excellence Award (CoCMEA), the technical working group of the Search Committee conducted a one-day field validation to the Sacred Heart Savings Cooperative (SHSC) on October 5, 2026.

Led by the team leader, Mr. Ace Wilfred Abarro II of the Bureau of Soils and Water Management, the 4-man team of evaluators include Dr. Rhea Desalesa, Ms. Hershey Turda and Mr. James Bacara from the Bureau of Agricultural Research, Agricultural Training Institute and the National Corn Program, respectively.

The SHSC is a 51-year old cooperative based in Galimuyod, Ilocos Sur with prime services that include lending through agri-capital and input, agricultural production and trading, processing along with other non-agricultural activities using the clusteirng approach that directly benefits its 6,300 members to date.

Along with the value adding activity of the cooperative is corn trading where farmers in the area could sell their produce in support to the feed mill that the coop maintains and correspondingly supports their hog production project with a thousand hog fattening stocks.

To date, the SHSC has around P4.3 billion in asset and maintaining the newly built Ban-aw Resort, feedmill, grocery store and other agribusiness development enterprises.

Prizes at stake are P2million worth of projects for the champion in support to the corn cluster development in their area plus plaque of recognition. Meanwhile, the first runner up will bring home P1.2 million worth of projects plus plaque while the second runner-up will receive P650,000 worth of projects and also a plaque of recognition.

The Search for Outstanding Corn Cluster is part of an annual activity of the National Corn Program to recognize the outstanding contributions of corn farmers’ organization and cooperatives in the development of the corn industry in each region in time for the conduct of the annual Corn Congress scheduled in November.

Joining the evaluation team is the Regional Corn Program Coordinator, Mr. Florentino Gallebo.