CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (PIA)–The Department of Agriculture-Philippine Coconut Authority (DA-PCA)-10 recently celebrated the 36th National Coconut Week as well as launched the Northern Mindanao Coconut Farmers and Industry Development Plan (CFIDP).
Anchored on the theme, “Masaganang Niyugan: Katuwang Tungo sa Maunlad na Kinabukasan,” the event was a hybrid setup held at De Luxe Hotel, here, and via zoom.
PCA-10 Regional Manager Manuel G. Octobre cited the importance of collaboration to ensure the success of the coconut industry saying, “Maghangyo ako kanatong tanan to let us work together para ang implementasyon nato sa CFIDP kay ato gyud mapatigayon, tinabangay kita, sinabtanay kita tanan (I ask everyone to work together in the implementation of the CFIDP as we can strengthen this if we help each other and understand each other) not only our partner implementing agencies but also our coconut farmer leaders/representative to give us inputs and feedbacks.”
For his part, PCA Administrator Benjamin R. Madrigal, Jr. explained the contribution of the coconut industry to the Philippine economy and more importantly how the government can support the industry, especially the coconut farmers to improve their current situation.
“PCA cannot implement the whole development of the coconut industry alone, kailangan po ang local agencies, ang leadership ng local government units. ‘Yung plano po natin ay dapat aligned sa ating (We need the local agencies, the leadership of the local government units. Our plan is to align this with our) regional development plan,” he said.
He also encouraged farmers to explore the other potential of coconut products with the emerging coconut products such as lambanog, ethanol alcohol, coconut water beverages, coco flour, coconut sweeteners, and virgin coconut oil.
Moreover, he briefly discussed the seven thematic recommendations under CFIDP, which aims to holistically develop the industry initially in the next 50 years. The thematic components include (1) social protection programs, (2) coconut farmers’ organization and development, (3) hybridization, (4) community-based farm enterprise development: farm rehabilitation and improvement, (5) integrated coconut processing and downstream products, (6) innovative research projects and their practical application on coconut processing, production and distribution and lastly (7) support services.
Mindanao farmer representative and PCA Board of Director Pepito C. Capangpangan shared his gratitude towards the development plan saying, “Nalipay kita sa gihatag nga development plan, nga promise fulfilled para sa atoa mga mag-uuma. Hinaut nga ato kining ampingan and isiguro nga maimplementar kining holistic nga tabang kanato.”
(We are happy with the development plan given to us, this is a promise fulfilled for us farmers. I hope that we will take care of this and ensure that this holistic assistance will be implemented)
Supporting the program, the Local Government of Misamis Oriental, represented by Jose Apollo Y. Pacamalan said the ongoing plans for the Misamis Oriental Provincial Agriculture Development Complex (MOPADC) shall soon be established as an integrated coconut processing facility, thus, helping the coconut farmers in the province.
The event also highlighted the emerging new coconut products such as coconut sap juice– a new type of beverage made from coconut sap and coconut savor– an alternative healthy food sauce. Also, exhibitors such as Oroqcoco, Trunk to Gold Agribusiness and Axelum displayed their coconut products during the event.
As one of the first regions to kick start the 36th coconut month celebration in August, PCA-10 is inviting everyone to the upcoming coconut activities nationwide such as seminars on other emerging coconut technologies.
The event was attended by coconut farmer leaders across the region, PCA Administrator Benjamin R. Madrigal, Jr., and Head Executive Assistant Francisco F. Mendoza, Jr., Mindanao Representative PCA Board of Director Pepito P. Capangpangan, partner implementing agencies of the CFIDP, local government units, and state college and university representatives. (PCA-10/PIA-10)