Agri-tourism site in Laguna offers trifold benefit thru carabao farming

The carabao’s ability to produce nutritious milk contributes to the Holy Carabao’s aim to make a healthy twist of foodstuffs for the family and consumers. Tantoco and Go were able to come up with delightful beverages, pastries, and salads available at the Farm Shed Cafe, the Holy Carabao’s very own coffee shop.

Health, wellness, and goodness alongside education of the children and advocacy to appreciate the value of nature are the combined essential elements behind the Holy Carabao Farm, established in 2007, located in Sta. Rosa, Laguna.

This holistic farm, which is guided by the principles of organic, biodynamic, and permaculture farming, was founded by Hindy Weber Tantoco. She started an organic gardening in her backyard in Sta. Rosa, Laguna as a quest to provide her family with delicious, healthy and chemical-free foods. 

From this simple initiative, she was able to share some of her harvests among friends and neighborhood, and later on the farm produce keeps growing and growing, until her husband decided to make the farming a reasonable business.

As Tantoco started the farming business, she was then joined by a friend and co-worker in Waldorf School, Melanie Go, in managing the Holy Carabao Farm until they were able to create an online store for pre-ordered products and door-to-door delivery service of organic foods in some parts of Metro Manila. Moreover, they also got an opportunity to sell in S&R and Rustan’s, aside from the farm’s outlet store in Rockwell located in Makati City. 

Go and Tantoco shared a mutual idea that a good life is derived from good and healthy food, which they derive from organic farming and carabao milk produced. 

By 2015, the Holy Carabao farm has acquired a lot beside the Waldorf School that paves the way for discovering more interventions like farm tours and field adventures, which help in sustaining the business.

Dealing with the three-way benefit

Health, wellness, and goodness. “Food gives life. A healthy source of body’s nourishment contributes to a person’s great lifestyle, thus, this enables a person to better appreciate life,” Tantoco averred.

Education of the children. Experiencing life in the farm through interactive immersion (planting of various fruits and vegetables, gardening, feeding and/or milking of carabaos) is an intrinsic portion of Waldorf School’s farm curriculum, whereas the Holy Carabao Farm in Sta. Rosa branch is involved.

Advocacy for nature.
As carabao has always been an indispensable partner in farming, it is also consistently associated with the nature. “The more the children are removed from nature, the less they will care,” Go declared. This idea urges them to really create a program for the Waldorf School and make Holy Carabao Farm aligned with the said advocacy. 

The animal’s dependency on the trees and soil paves way to offering a carabao cartride adventure in the farm. Moreover, a relaxing therapeutic tour for individuals with 

special assistance is available.

Private engagement with PCC 
farmer cooperative

Since the farm has only two or three native carabaos, the farm owners, Go and Tantoco, require a supply of carabao’s milk to sustain their food processing operation. They then partnered with Mr. Richard Cavosora, a carabao’s milk consolidator from Magdalena, Laguna, who has been providing more or less 200 liters of milk monthly to Holy Carabao Farm to promote wellness and goodness for every fresh product.

Mr. Cavosora delivers the milk to the Holy Carabao Farm’s commissary in Cabuyao, Laguna. It is where the products are being made and eventually brought to Makati for distribution.

Their dairy products include fresh pasteurized milk, which is sold frozen, and various cheeses usually topped on salads. 

Aside from the existing products, the gelato will be introduced in the market as a welcoming product for 2020.   

Naming of Holy Carabao Farm

Go describes the name “Holy Carabao” as ‘local yet global’ in recognition of the hardworking farmers or field workers who put in efforts for every farm produce. 
Its concept of “farm to table” to reach the family or consumers, the compassion and reverence, heart and soil, sensitivity to key players, honest-to-goodness prices of products and wages for its farm workers are the inspirations for “Holy Carabao”. 

The eagerness of Tantoco to strive for a healthy living encompasses as well a friendly and genuine intention to create a mark of ‘more than just a farm’.

Indeed, from a source of nutritious milk up to the children’s awareness and education of how a traditional farming is done and the affiliation to nature for its better appreciation is being obtained through a carabao. 

These mentioned aspects of equally important contributions to human being are carried through with the existence of a carabao, which immensely contributes to farming even in the face of mechanization.