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Inside Bukidnon

BusinessWeek Mindanao
Ped T. Quiamjot
August 16, 2010

THE biggest province in Region 10 and rank eight in the Philippines in terms of land area stretching 1,049, 862 hectares or 10,498.56 square kilometers, Bukidnon is slightly elevated and centrally located. With 669,529.25 hectares classified as timberland, it receives the highest rainfall in a year making agricultural land moist and productive while the lakes and rivers runs abundant with water serving as a watershed for Cagayan de Oro City and aquifer for Davao City. Its mountain ranges and plateaus stretches down to Cotabato. Out of the typhoon belt area, the province has 380,332.75 hectares of alienable and disposable land, 92% is utilized for agricultural production.

Major crops planted in Bukidnon are sugar cane, corn and rice in that order. These three major crops grown contribute to the subsidy of the national economic demand. Sugar production alone capitalized by BUSCO Sugar Milling rank number two in terms of tonnage among the producers in the entire Philippines. Sugar cane waste in a form of molasses can be refined to alcohol and ingredients for bio-ethanol. Another milling, Crystal Sugar shares the requirements of the multinational institutional buyers. While large agri-business pioneered by Del Monte and Dole Philippines ventures into pineapple plantation, banana growing, cassava production and high value crops that goes to the domestic and export market. Robusta coffee under the Monks brand remains a cravings and trade mark among the countries high society and always available in many 5-star hotels in Manila.

Bukidnon has important river systems that can draw investors for hydro electric power to alleviate the high power demand in the region. It has various lakes that dot the landscape ideal for eco-tourism and high end resort and Spa development. Province wide, it has a stable peace and order that draws confidence among big contract growers the likes of San Miguel, Monterey Farms, Swifts Foods, Purefoods, Vitarich and Rebisco into food manufacturing sourcing their live stocks and materials from the green fields and fertile land.

With a growing Agri-industrial economy synergized with key government programs in place that uplifts livelihood, health care, hospital systems and education.

Bukidnon is a good location for a retirement community among foreign expatriates who can easily be attracted to the weather and the clean environment consisting of natural and adventure parks, a world class championship golf course, mountain ranges and fresh body of healing water that transform into lakes harmonized with nature.

Two major high end realty holdings have recently opened for business, W. Brown and Menzi Orchards with their prize development in the towns of Malaybalay and Manolo Fortich have attracted investors bringing lifestyles and luxuries to those who can afford the calm and holistic settings.

Retail business has prospered too with the expansion of the Gaisano group taking advantage of the high capita income of the province.

Inside Bukidnon, even the departed have a place in progress and serenity as Pryce Corporation launched two state of the art memorial parks in Mambatangan and Malaybalay Gardens.

It rises as final resting place among the esteemed that rides the saddle of hard work and prosperity and have reached their time.

Inside Bukidnon, it is a highland paradise among the living where business is guaranteed a return of investments from the conduits of the financial institutions extending agricultural loans to the farmers and the growers.