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TULABIS, MARY ANN P. APRIL 2012. Baseline Study of Cooperatives in Kibungan, Benguet. Benguet State University, La Trinidad, Bneguet.

Adviser: David Joseph L. Bognadon, MCM.


This study was conducted to describe the profile of the cooperative to describe the profile of the primary cooperatives as to status of operation, services offered and composition of members, to determine the sources of funds and financial status of cooperatives; to find out the needs and problems of the cooperatives; and to determine the solutions employed by the primary cooperative to meet their problems and needs.

The respondents of the study were the managers of the primary cooperatives;

however, in the absence of the manager, the staff or officer who knows the information about their cooperative served as the respondent. A survey questionnaire and personal interview was used to gather the information.

The finding shows that the ten primary cooperatives offer different services such as credit, consumer and food catering. The ten primary cooperatives need trainings and seminars for the members and officers regarding the different aspects of the cooperative operation like credit and collection management, training for storekeepers and financial management; and financial assistance that their main source of funds come from the share capital and membership fees of members.




The cooperatives has been one of the popular forms of organizations and found in practically all countries today and Philippines is one of them. People learned to use many ways to improve their means of living.

In our region, we rely on agriculture as a source of livelihood but despite of this, we cannot say that all of us are contented with our way of life. We are all forced to pursue other alternatives or other ways to sustain our common need so there is a need for change to uplift our economic situation. Cooperative is considered as one of the economic force for the purpose.

Cooperatives are organized to help its members by providing goods and services at reasonable prices. Through the cooperative, the low income members could avail of loans at low rate of interest instead of borrowing from the creditors. The cooperative can also serve as a marketing agent from producers who are left at the mercy of the middlemen.

Though primary cooperatives provide goods and services to its members, it should also teach them how to increase their income and savings. In this way, their purchasing power will increase and their economic status will be elevated.

Baseline data are essential inputs in project planning especially in the developmental projects, in the formulation of policies and as a benchmark data for an organization. Data base are important in allocating resources of the different activities of an organization. Thus, result of the study could be an input to the cooperative itself and may provide CDA to come up with programs that would help the cooperatives.


Importance of the Study

The result of the study would be useful to the cooperatives to come up with better plans and programs to improve their operations. To the members and officers, it would increase awareness on the different programs for their benefit.

Findings of the study could also serve as a record for the organization/cooperative and basis in proposal development where this data are needed.

Statement of the Problem

The study aimed to provide baseline data on the different cooperatives established in Kibungan, Benguet. In addition, the study aimed to answer the following questions:

1. What is the profile of the cooperative as to:

a. Status of the cooperative b. Area of operation

c. Services they offer

d. Composition of members

2. What are the sources of funds of the cooperative and the financial status of the cooperatives?

3. What are the needs of the cooperative?

4. What are the problems and solutions employed the cooperative?


Objectives of the Study

Generally, the study was conducted to generate baseline data of the cooperatives operating in Kibungan, Benguet.

Specifically, the study was conducted to:

1. Determine the profile of the cooperative as to:

a. Status of the cooperative b. Area of operation

c. Services they offer d. Composition of members

2. Determine the sources of funds and thefinancial status of the cooperative.

3. Find out the needs of the cooperative.

4. Determine the problems and solutions employed the cooperatives.

Scope and Delimitation

The study covered the whole municipality of Kibungan, Benguet. Cooperatives that are presently operating in this area were considered in the study.



Cooperative Defined

Cooperative is an autonomous and duly registered association of persons, with a common bond of interest, who have voluntarily joined together to achieve their social, economic, and cultural needs and aspirations by making equitable contributions to the capital required, patronizing their products and services and accepting a fair share of the risks and the benefits of the undertaking in accordance with universally accepted cooperative principle (Cooperative Code of the Philippines, 2008).

Concept of a Cooperative

The cooperative may be said to have begun as early as the period of human history when we had ceased to be nomadic and settled in communities or as a group for the cooperative. Spirit among members of the community and springs from the inherent gregariousness of men thus, Webster’s International Dictionary states that the cooperative is marked by working together and by joining efforts towards a common end; it is not motivated by an individual’s selfish ends.

The cooperative movement of the recent years originated from the ideas espoused by men like Robert Owen (1995), Saint –Simon (1995), Louis Blacand Fourien (1995).

Robert Owen was presently referred to as the “Father of Cooperative”. It was he who wrote articles and books on cooperatives that have inspired the present-day cooperative movement. It emphasized the need for cooperative instead of competition in human society (Cooperative Code of the Philippines, 2008).


Objectives and Goals of a Cooperative

The primary objective of every cooperative is to help to improve the quality of life of its members. Towards this end, the cooperative aim to: a. Provide goods and services to its members to enable them to attain increased income, savings, investments, productivity, and purchasing power, and promote among themselves equitable distribution of net surplus through maximum utilization of economies of scale, cost-sharing and risk sharing; b.

Provide optimum social and economic benefits to its members;c. Teach them efficient ways of doing things in a cooperative manner;d. Propagate cooperative practices and new ideas in business and management; e. Allow the lower income and less privileged groups to increase their ownership in the wealth of the nation; and f. Cooperative with the government, other cooperatives and people-oriented organizations to further the attainment of any of the foregoing objectives (Cooperative Code of the Philippines, 2008).

Cooperative Management

Management is applied in different aspects of business as well as in organization.

It is the accumulated talents of both labor and management since either to promote and increase the production or for the future.

To contribute on the pursuit of cooperative development , the management is therefore , designed the broader the ideas of all members involved in the organization in order to enlightened of the cooperatives purpose to them and their roles as members , and to become responsible, empowered, and productive (Jose, 2010).


Needs of Cooperative

Villanueva (1981), stated that the importance of cooperatives a s instruments for socio-economic development cannot be underestimated. In their effective use, they have succeeded in accelerating the growth of low income and less segments of the society. But as experiences shows, most cooperatives failed to achieve this end. One major reason for such failure is lack of proper attitude and skills on the part of the members and officers to participate effectively in the affairs of the cooperatives. “Because a full pledge cooperative is a business enterprise engaged in complicated activities, its demands are greater. It requires efficient management, able leadership and vigilant members, etc. these are not readily available, neither are they readily learned (Calixto, 2006).

Common Problems of a Cooperative

According to the Handbook of Agrarian Reforms (1975) on Cooperative and Taxation (1975), as cited by Tabdi (1997), one of the main problems of cooperative development in the lack of competent staff at various lends of qualifications. This shortage of adequately trained staff is especially acute in the field of management of social and economic development; assistance to training cooperative personnel and officers a swell as the members is needed.

Lack of experience beyond training is a major problem in management of cooperatives in the Philippines. Any training certificate, university or college diploma or school certificate is only a passport to experiences. Experience is gained on the job and a broad experience may take year in cooperatives’ business activities. More recruitment from within, substituting local knowledge for experiences, as well as on job training should be utilized (Grosby et al., 1975).


Sources of Funds for Cooperatives

Cooperatives can avail of internal and external sources of funds.

1. Internal Sources.

The primary source of funds for the cooperative is the general membership through several programs.

a. Capital build-Up. Members may schedule registration payment of share capital of fixed deposits to continuously increase their paid up share in the cooperative.

b. Savings mobilization. Members with idle money can deposit them in the cooperative through savings or time deposit so that others who are in need can borrow them for productive purposes.

c. Revolving fund. Deferred payment of dividends may be approved by the General Assembly to allow the cooperative use it for a given period.

2. External Sources of Funds

a. Loan/borrowings. Borrowing may be valid for as a source of funds but should be done only when additional fund is urgently needed that can not be generated by the internal sources.

b. Donation/grant. A cooperative/organization may request solicit financial assistance from either government or benevolent non-government agency. This is a good source because payment is not required. However, financial assistance of this nature requires preparation and submission of a project proposal (Buasen, 2003).

Article 73 of the Cooperative Code of the Philippines (Abasolo et al., 1996) states that the capital sources of the cooperatives registered may be derived their capital from any


or all of the following sources: a) members share capital; b) loans and borrowings including deposits; c) revolving capital; and d) subsidiaries, donations, legacies, grants-

in-aid; e) such other assistance from any local or foreign institution whether public or private (Domingo, 2005).

Success Factors of Cooperatives

Internal and external forces combine to influence the success of cooperatives. The factors which the members and leaders of an association have some degree of control includes the following: a) members’ recognition of common needs, b) members’

conviction for group action, c) leaders’ dedication, d) good record keeping system, e)frequency of audits, f) continuing cooperative education program, and h) proper guidance.

Management. Cooperative should be properly managed. Training individual for management is not enough. There is a need to develop proper attitudes and values such as honesty, integrity and deep sense of social responsibility among the managers and members. The success of any cooperative greatly depends on the performances of the manager. For this reason, cooperative managers should be properly selected. Personal friendship and trust should not only be the criteria for appointing a manager and its staff (Fajardo and Abella, 1993).

Management of funds. Runkle et al. (1999) said that excellent financial record management particularly on the management of the transaction records of income and expense is a must to ensure the profitability and growth of a cooperative. All necessary documents should be kept and made available for reference when needed. Punzalan (1999) strengthen the statement of the forgoing when she said that regular audit is needed to maintain a genuine


financial record or requirements for a cooperative to be able to operate smoothly (Bacod, 2004).

Conduct of continuous education and training. Punzalan (1999)found in this study that that failure of a cooperative to conduct continuous education and training to its members, officers, and management staff among the common pitfalls which cause cooperative business miss management.

Leadership. Habenicht and Lewn (1996) found out in their study that the kind of leadership is shows affect the individual or group he deals with. Leaders should always assess their leadership style to determine if it makes people hostile and turns them off. And if it does, the leaders should change or modify their leadership style to harmonize with people. The characteristics of a good leader are: having the ability to organize details;

willingness to render services without expected a pay; promotes fair competition among the followers; unselfish; honest; sincere; and humble (Jose, 2010).

Good leaders came up with good plans and implement standards for appropriate for the group. They communicate confidence with the desire with the group to grow. They clearly explain reasons for work accomplishments standard but respect the members view points while being firm with the principles involved. They listen to and consider the feelings of the group, teat the group, as a partner in the attainment of their goals, talk necessary things and have joy in doing them, and show interest in activities for the group’s development and success. Leaders need to evaluate the group’s accomplishments and their socio- economic impact as basis in their immediate and future actions; and they need to recognize the Almighty God who helps and deals with their group (Fajardo and Abella, 1993).

Failures Related Factors of Cooperatives


According to the study conducted by Osting (1993) as cited by Begawen (2002), the problems met by the cooperative members are: lack of funds, lack of qualified officers, lack of cooperation, lack of management, improper payment of credit, non-implementation of policies, and lack of training and education. It was found out that collection of additional share and recruiting more members was done to remedy lack of funds. And for other problems, there were no solutions adopted.

Failure of a cooperative is due to the fact that the members become loan-oriented with financial assistance being perceived as doleouts. They lack education and training information and practical know how regarding cooperative management. The members had not internalized the cooperative principles and practices. The inadequate working capital;

and marketing facilities and other support services contributed to the cooperative failure.

The members’ attitudes such as disloyalty, poor management and leadership and the absence of audit and internal control also contributed in the cooperative failure. The insufficient and inadequate government agency supervision entrusted with development and the presence of political influence were other contributory factors in this cooperative failure.

Definition of Term

Baseline data. Initial collection of data which serves as a basis of comparison with the subsequently acquired data (Business Dictionary)



Locale and Time of the Study

The study was conducted in Kibungan, Benguet from November to December 2011.Kibungan is a 4th class municipality in the province of Benguet. The study area is located 62 kilometers north of Baguio City within a cool highland mountainous zone. It has an elevation of more than 2500 meters above sea level.

Respondents of the Study

The respondents of the study were the managers of the cooperative or any of the officers that can provide the information needed.All the cooperatives that are operating in Kibungan were the source of information.

Research Instruments

The research made use of primary and secondary data. Primary data were gathered from the respondents with the use of a survey questionnaire and personal interview. Secondary data were taken from the CDA, Barangay record and records of the cooperative.

Data Gathered

The data gathered were the profile cooperative as to their status of operation. Area of operation, services offered and the composition of members; financial status of the cooperative, the problems and needs and the solutions that the cooperative use to solve the problem.


Figure 1. Provincial map showing the location of the study


Figure 2. Municipality of Kibungan showing the location of the study


Data Analysis

Data were tabulated and analyzed according to its objectives. Data were presented using frequency and percentage analysis.



Profile of Cooperatives in Kibungan

This chapter presents a brief background of the primary cooperatives in Kibungan, Benguet. It includes the status of cooperatives, date registered, starts of operation, numbers of years in operation, area of operation, services offered, compositions of members and sources of funds.

Status of operation. The finding shows that all the primary cooperatives in Kibungan that were registered at CDA are still operating as of the conduct of the study. Based on the study of Calixto in 2006, there were 13 registered cooperatives in Kibungan. However, as of this study it was found out that only 9 are still operating and one cooperative was organized.

The other four cooperatives were already dissolved.

Date organized and numbers of years in operation. Table 1 also presents the year when these cooperatives were organized and the number of years of operation. The oldest cooperative was the Madaymen MPC and the Poblacion Kibungan MPC. Both were organized in 1991 and in operation for 21 years. Majority of the 10 of cooperatives were organized in the early 1990’s. The latest cooperative organized in Kibungan was the Kibungan Arabica Coffee Growers MPC which is only four years old in operation.

Area of operation. The area of operation refers to the scope of the place where the cooperativesare located including members. Area of operation may be the barangay, the whole municipality or even the whole province. The result shows that almost all the cooperatives were operating in their respective barangays except for the KEMPC which is an institutional cooperative. The members of this cooperative were the municipal


Services offered. The services offered by the primary cooperatives in Kibungan, Benguet were credit or lending, consumers or sari-sari store and catering. There were two cooperatives that offered both credit and consumer services. These were Bokes MPC, and KACGMPC. The cooperatives that offered consumer services were Oscapa MPC, Palina MPC and Poblacion MPC. Kibungan Mothers and Family MPC, Bobocco MPC and Lamut Taliboy-oc MPC offered only credit while KEMPC offered consumer, credit and food catering services (Table 1).

Compositions of members. Table 1 shows the composition of members in each cooperative. The result shows that almost all the cooperatives in Kibungan were composed of farmer members except the KEMPC which consist of only municipal employees of Kibungan. As to composition of members, most of the cooperative members were female.

The table also shows that Bobocco MPC has the highest total number of members of 170 as of December 2010 and the lowest was 35.

Sources of funds. Table 2 shows the source of funds of the cooperatives in Kibungan, Benguet. The sources of funds of the different cooperatives as claimed by the officers/managers were from share capital and membership fees. There were 2 cooperatives who received grants or subsidies. Results supports the study of Buasen (2003) that cooperatives can avail of internal sources of funds through capital build-up, savings mobilization, revolving fund, and external sources from loan/borrowings and grants/donations.


Table 1. Profile of the cooperative as to status of operation, year organized, area of operation, services offered and composition of members








Occupation Gender TOTAL


Bobocco MPC Active 1991 20 Barangay Credit Farming 130 120 170

Bokes MPC Active 1991 20 Barangay Credit,



KACGMPC Active 2007 4 Barangay Credit,



17 18 35

KEMPC Active 1994 17 Municipality Credit,

Consumer, Catering

Government Employee

64 85 149


Table 1. continued…








Occupation Gender TOTAL


KM&F MPC Active 1998 13 Barangay Credit Farming

LT MPC Active 1992 19 Barangay Credit Farming 51 23 74

MMPC Active 1990 21 Barangay Credit Farming

Osccpa MPC Active 1997 14 Barangay Consumer Farming 43 28 71

Palina MPC Active 1991 20 Barangay Consumer Farming 0 76 76

Poblacion MPC

Active 1990 21 Barangay Consumer Farming 38 25 63


Table 2. Sources of funds of the cooperatives


Internal sources

Share Capital 10 100

CETF 6 60

Development Fund 3 30

Reserved Fund 7 70

Revolving Fund 5 50

Membership Fee 8 80

Member’s Deposit 5 50

Income from operation 10 100

External sources

Loans and barrowings 5 50

Grants and donations 2 20

Financial Status of the Cooperatives.

Table 3 presents the total asset, total liabilities and total equity of the primary cooperatives.

The table shows that 30% of the cooperative did not submit their Cooperative Annual Reports (CAPR) to CDA. Due to some officer did not do their obligation as a cooperative as mentioned by member. The table shows that there were two cooperative increased their asset for two years operation. These are Oscapa MPC and KEMPC. Only KEMPC accumulated more than one million in asset. As to total liabilities, the table shows that only


Bobocco MPC and KEMPC decreased their total liabilities. Three cooperatives increased in total equity which includes Boboco MPC, KEMPC, and Oscapa MPC.

Needs of the Cooperatives

The identified needs of the cooperatives were categorized into training and education, financial needs. These were presented in Table 4. Most (90%) of the respondents mentioned that their cooperatives needs training on credit collection management for their officers and staff, (70%) for financial management and Bookkeeping/Accounting management, (60 %) on cooperative and management. The other training needs mentioned were leadership training, training for storekeeper and entrepreneurial skills development, project proposal presentation, how to organize a cooperative and field trip.

As to the financial need of the cooperatives, there were only a few respondents who mentioned that their cooperatives need financial grants and subsidies to increase their operating capitals and they need to come up with an effective strategy to mobilize savings among the people in the rural areas because this would help them accumulate capital and at the same time teach the people how to save apart their income for future needs. Half (50%) of the respondents mentioned that they need to come up with a capital build up strategy to increase the members paid up share capital. In this way, they could accumulate funds for their cooperatives’ operation and at the same time increase the investment of members in their cooperative.

Other needs mentioned by the respondents were infrastructure like building and bookkeeper.


Table 3. Total assets, total liabilities and total equity of the primary cooperatives




2009 2010 2009 2010 2009 2010

Boboco MPC 225,400.39 313,980 50,500.00 48,000 174,900.38 361,980


KACGMPC 131,304.98 10,000 17,588.04 12,000 113,716.94 22,000

KEMPC 7,657,941.33 8,300,358.87 1,472,833.55 356,267.57 6,185,007.79 6,656,441.55 Kibungan Mothers MPC 298,065.00 286,318 28,447.000 30,063.00 269,618.00 256,255.00 LamutTaliboy-oc MPC 162,907.80 16,050.65 146,857.15 Madaymen PMC No Primary and secondary data

Oscapa MPC 577,156.14 694,428.62 58,471.26 125,942.04 518,684.88 117,689.95 Palina MPC 165,086.00 143,000 59,840.00 143,000 105,246 587,749.21

Poblacion MPC NO DATA


Table 4. Needs of the cooperatives


Training and Education

Credit and collection management 9 90

Financial management 7 70

Bookkeeping/accounting training 7 70

Cooperation and management 6 60

Entrepreneurial skill 5 50

Leadership training 4 40

Training for storekeepers 4 40

Trainer’s training 3 30

Project proposal presentation 3 30

How to organize cooperative 1 10

Field trip 1 10

Financial Needs

More paid-up share capital 5 50

Subsidies, grants and donations 2 20

Other Needs

Building 5 50

Bookkeeper 2 20


Problems Encountered by the Cooperatives

Table 5 presents the identified problems of the cooperatives were categorized into education, management and finance. As to education, the table shows that members are lack on cooperative education and training. Lack of skill to evaluate financial operation.

As to management problems, 60% mentioned that their members are delinquent in paying their loans. Half of the respondent mentioned that their members do not patronized their cooperative due to the reason that the price of the cooperative is higher than the price offered of sari-sari stores. Other problems mentioned were records are not updated, limited knowledge on cooperative management. Inactive participations of members due to lack of information dissemination.

Solutions to the Cooperative Problems and Needs

Table 6 presents some solutions to the problems and needs of the cooperatives. These solutions were suggested by the respondents. In order to encourage the members to patronize their cooperatives and participate in all their activities, cooperative member and officers should continuously be educate by sending them to attend seminars and trainings and second, by conducting seminar in their respective cooperative.

As solutions to their management problems, the major solutions suggested by the respondents were as follows: let co-maker pay, give early notice to the members regarding the cooperative activities for the members to participate, motivate members to patronize their product or services in the cooperative. Other mentioned solutions were sent staff to seminar and training on record keeping, hire bookkeeper and training on financial analysis.


As to finance, 70% of the respondents suggested to encourage member to add their share capital and 30% conduct fund raising activities.

Table 5. Problems encountered by the cooperatives


On education

Lack of education and training of members 3 30

Lack of cooperative education and training of members

5 50

Lack of skill to evaluate financial operation 3 30 As to management

Inactive participation of members in activities 4 40 Most members did not patronize the cooperative 5 50

Members are delinquent in paying loans 6 60

Limited knowledge on cooperative analysis 3 30

Records are not updated 3 30

As to finance

Limited capital to sustain the operation 9 90


Table 6. Suggested solutions to the cooperative needs and problems


As to education

Conduct continuous education of members, officers and staffs

6 60

Conduct orientation and training to members, officers and staff

4 40

Send members to field trip to other cooperatives 1 10 As to management

Give early notice to the cooperative activities 5 50 Sent staff to seminar on record keeping 3 30 Hire bookkeeper 3 30 Let co-maker pay 5 50 Motive members to patronize their Cooperative 4 40 Send staff to seminar on financial analysis 3 30 As to finance

Encourage members to add their capital 7 70 Do fund raising activities 3 30




The study covered 10 cooperatives of Kibungan. This study was conducted to determine the profile of the primary cooperatives, determine their financial status, their needs and their problems and the solutions employed to solve their problems.

As to area of operations most of the cooperatives were operating in the barangay and there were 2 to 3 cooperatives operating in the same barangay with the same services offered. There were 7 cooperatives offering single service but registered as a multipurpose.

Most of the members of the cooperatives were farmers. Sources of funds of the cooperatives mainly came from share capital and membership fees.

The cooperative needs more training on credit collection management, financial management and bookkeeping/accounting management. Problems encountered by the cooperatives are members are delinquent in paying their loans, lack of education and trainings of members and officers, most members do not patronize their cooperatives, inactive participation of members in cooperative activities and limited capital to sustain their operation. Solutions to these needs and problems according to the respondents were:

encourage their members to patronize their cooperatives most especially to their consumer service and participate in all activities. Members also should be continuously educated through seminars and trainings.



Based on the result of the study, the following conclusions were made:

1. Cooperative memberships were composed mostly members.

2. Cooperative is registered as a Multipurpose cooperative but offering a single service.

3. All of the cooperatives main source of funds were share capital and membership fee.

4. Cooperative problems were lack of cooperative management, limited knowledge about the cooperative and delinquent in paying loans and limited capital to sustain their operation.

5. The cooperative needs trainings and seminars for leaders, members and staffs.


1. Cooperative should not limit their members, they should accept associate members.

3. Cooperative should offer/add more services.

4. The cooperative should send their members, officers and staffs to cooperative training and seminars to gain more knowledge which they could use in the improvement of their cooperatives.

6. Members and officers should understand what cooperative is, thus a follow-up training similar with PMES should be conducted

7. The cooperative should offer/conduct seminars.

8. Strict implementation of the cooperative policies.



BACOD, L. M. 2004. Profile of the Primary Cooperatives in Kabayan, Benguet. BS Thesis.Benguet State University. La Trinidad, Benguet. P. 9

BEGAWEN, P.M. 2002. Evaluation of Cooperative Policies Managed and Practiced by Amionget Multi-Purpose Cooperative (AMCO) in Amionget, Kapangan, Benguet.


BUASEN, C. T. 2003. Brief Guide in Financial Management and Analysis for Cooperatives. Pp.3-6

CALIXTO, S. T. 2006. Profile of the Primary Cooperatives in Kibungan, Benguet. P. 9 CONGRESS OF THE PHILIPPINES, 2008. Philippine Cooperative Code of 2008.R.A

9520 Pp.24,28

DOMINGO, W. D. 2005.Profile of Primary Cooperatives in Western Baguio City.

Pp. 5-6

FAJARDO, F.R and F.D. ABELLA. 1993. Cooperatives, Qeuzon City Rex Printing Company, Inc. Pp. 3-4

GROSBY, R. HOGAN, J.; ROSE J., and O. SHELLEY. 1975. Cooperative Rice Marketing Study. Agricultural Cooperative Development International Washington D.

HABENICHT R. L.and LEWN J. P. 1996. What kind of leader are you? Health an Home. Pp. 44-47

JOSE, E.F. 2010.Management of the Municipal Cooperative Development Council of Santa, Maria, Bulacan. Pp. 17-20

PUNZALAN, A.D.T. 1999. Honoring Cooperatives Madrid Agribusiness. Pp. 31-33 TABDI, R. A. 1997. Baseline Survey of Cooperatives in Atok, Benguet. P. 6

Mga Sanggunian


Objectives The study aims to document the human resource profile of the green mussel industry of Samar, specifically it will; 2.1 Determine the profile of the mussel farmers in terms