With the presence of DOST key officials and other distinguished guests, namely DOST Secretary Dr. Renato U. Solidum Jr., DOST Undersecretary for Regional Operations Engineer Sancho A. Mabborang, DOST Undersecretary Teodoro M. Gatchalian, DOST XI Regional Director Dr. Anthony C. Sales, NCMF Secretary Atty. Guiling A. Mamondiong, DOST Undersecretary Maridon O. Sahagun, Director of Bureau of Muslim Economic Affairs Rahmatol M. Mamukid, NCMF Spokesperson/Commissioner  Yusoph J. Mando, DOST-CALABARZON Regional Director Ms. Emelita P. Bagsit, and directors and representatives from DOST ROs and attached agencies.

Under the guidance of Dr. Sancho A. Mabborang, DOST Undersecretary for Regional Operations, the event started with a warm welcome to all attendees. Dr, Mabborang emphasizes the importance and responsibilities of the agency as halal food manufacturers in maintaining halal product integrity.

He marked, “Our most important responsibility as halal food manufacturers, food researchers, and food handlers is that we must maintain the halal integrity of the products. We must eliminate the risk of haram and other hazards through HAS so that the products that we produce are guaranteed to be halal, safe, of high quality, and wholesome.” Dr. Mabborang added, “These laboratories will help ensure that the products sold in the market are properly analyzed and are compliant with halal standards, not only in the Philippines, but also in the global halal market.”

This collaboration aims to enhance market surveillance by utilizing advanced testing methods at the DOST HVLs, specifically targeting the detection of porcine DNA and the determination of alcohol levels in various food and beverage items. These measures are crucial in upholding the integrity of locally certified halal products.

While DOST have been actively engaged in spearheading programs, projects, and activities (PPAs) to uplift the Philippine Halal Industry, under the provisions of DOST Memorandum Circular No. 010 series of 2016, DOST Secretary Dr. Renato U. Solidum Jr. wants to encourage cooperation of the legislators, agencies and organization to collaborate in putting up and sustaining halal industry development.

“DOST will remain committed in supporting halal industry development… But we cannot do it alone, we need the support of our legislators to push for our agenda, that these technologies be known and adopted by many,” DOST Secretary Dr. Renato U. Solidum Jr. said.

As a member-agency of the Philippine Halal Export Development and Promotion Board (PHEDPB), DOST aimed to collaborate with the NCMF to support the promotion of the Philippine Halal Industry and to enhance market surveillance by utilizing advanced testing methods at the DOST HVLs in Region IV-A, Davao Region, Region XII, Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

This Memorandum of Agreement established a comprehensive framework outlining the responsibilities of the DOST HVLs in conducting stringent testing protocols to identify prohibited elements in halal products and uphold their integrity. Furthermore, it granted the NCMF the authority to propose and recommend policies regarding market surveillance and the mandatory inclusion of halal testing as part of the certification and recertification processes for halal products.

This collaboration stands as a testament to the dedication of DOST and NCMF in fortifying the integrity and authenticity of Halal products in the market. By pooling their expertise and resources, both agencies aim to elevate the standards of Halal certification, establishing a strong foundation for quality assurance.