I did not put a ton of money in my business, but a few kilos worth!
I built a rice mill in Roxas City (Panay Island), Philippines 5 years ago. We started out with enough capital to purchase 5 hectares of land and a 50-ton a day rice milling line from China.
Five years later we have expanded our milling lines to 3. Our daily output is 250 tons per day. That's 5,000 50 kilo bags of rice in 20 hours. We added these machines because we were turning customers away. On average we run all of our machines at least 14 hours per day year around. I have also added extra warehouses and purchased 10 more hectares of property to supply extra drying areas for the rice traders.
Currently we charge 63 Philippines Pesos milling fee per 50 kilo bag of rice milled. There are 15 local rice mills within 30 miles of our location. The reason we have the business is the traders get higher returns of rice and professional service, not the usual monkey business at the local mills.
What I have learned is that you need to run the business yourself. Do not trust anyone. This includes family, accountants, contractors etc. The same as you would in any country. Also, import your equipment, do not buy locally. Do not give credit to anyone and treat all of your customers fairly and equally.
We pay our workers hourly wages, supply Philippine Social Security, Philippine Health Insurance, and a bonus of 1 month's pay at the end of every year. I have not had one person leave in over 4 years.
There are many opportunities to make money in this country if you have the capital and the will. This can be a paradise. I would not have been able to do this business in the U.S.A. with the amount of capital I invested in the Philippines nor would I have been able to live the lifestyle my wife and I enjoy.
I have 15 years before I can retire. The Philippines has been good to me. If you're in Roxas City stop in and visit!
Submitted by Tom
Farmers Milling & Supply Inc., Roxas City