Richard T. Pal-laya, Electro-Mechanic Technician, demonstrates the concepts of proper operation and maintenance of the color sorter machine to the workers of Torres Rice Mill.

CABUGAO, Ilocos Sur – Torres Rice Mill, a rice milling firm in Cabugao, Ilocos Sur, integrated the latest sorting technology to improve the quality of their milled rice by capacitating four (4) of their workforce on machine operation and maintenance. The training was provided by the Department of Science and Technology through one of its flagship programs, the Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program or SETUP, held last month.

The DOST Region I, through the Provincial Science & Technology Center – Ilocos Sur (PSTC-IS), facilitated the training on the operation and maintenance of the Color Sorter machine in partnership with Ricemac Philtrade Corporation. The mill’s four workers, including Arden S. Torres, owner of Torres Rice Mill, were introduced to the general aspects of operation and maintenance of the newly acquired Color Sorter machine that ensure a high percentage of recovery, therefore improving production and quality of their products.

Since high quality rice grains commands a higher price, the firm received a total of Php 2.4M of financial assistance last June 2, 2022 from the DOST for the acquisition of the 5G Color Sorter Machine with full color CCD camera, RGB led lamp, and fully automatic control system.

According to Torres, most of their clients demand quality milled rice, free from foreign and discolored grains. The machine will definitely help the company level up their product that consumers prefer.

With the intervention, the elimination of the firm’s existing constraints in producing quality milled rice, free from typical defects and discolored grains, could be attained. The color sorter machine will further help the firm increase their productivity by 10% and will significantly increase their income in their rice milling services and rice retailing business.

Before the intervention, the firm has an existing second-hand color sorter machine acquired in 2018. However, the machine is beginning to show signs of inefficiency due to the presence of discolored grains, producing low quality output.

Richard T. Pal-laya, Electro – Mechanic Technician from Ricemac Philtrade Corporation served as the resource person during the training.

Torres Rice Mill is one of the assisted firms of the center for this year that availed of SETUP – a flagship program of the agency that aims to assist existing Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to address their technological problems and improve productivity and efficiency through technology acquisition, human resource training, functional packages and label designing, and product testing. (By Laurine R. Sales, DOST-I)

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