National action plan for coconut oil sought

Louella Desiderio - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — The government is aiming to finalize by next year a national action plan to promote the growth of coconut oil production and exports. 

In a statement, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said a technical working group is planned to be convened early next year to finalize the national action plan. 

Last week, the DTI, Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development met with various coconut oil industry stakeholders to discuss strategies on the promotion of virgin coconut oil production and exports. 

During the meeting, discussions were also conducted to see how prepared the country is when it comes to green production and exports of sustainable coconut oil. 

“Coconut is a million dollar earner. It is one of the country’s biggest commodity in terms of share in production and export shares but the industry is virtually challenged,”  PCA administrator Roel Rosales said. 

He said among the challenges faced by coconut farmers is the sector’s vulnerability to climate change.

Trade Undersecretary Rowel Barba said another challenge for the sector, particularly for micro, small and medium exporters, is the organic certification. 

Many foreign buyers now require organic certification for exports. 

After the discussions, Barba said a national action plan to support virgin coconut oil export and development would be crafted.

He said the action plan would also establish a framework for the collaboration of different stakeholders in the coconut oil value chain. 

Last year, the country’s coconut oil exports reached $1 billion in terms of revenue and over 951,000 metric tons in terms of volume.   


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