1,000 plantlets kick-start coffee program in CentraVisayas
DA-7 High Value Crops Development Program coordinator John Dennis Ranario bared that the agency is procuring planting materials of Robusta coffee to expand the coffee production in Central Visayas.
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1,000 plantlets kick-start coffee program in CentraVisayas
Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon (The Freeman) - July 30, 2020 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — With the aim of revitalizing the coffee industry in Central Visayas, the Department of Agriculture (DA)-7 has started planting an initial 1,000 Robusta coffee plantlets at the Ubay Stock Farm (USF) in Ubay, Bohol.

DA-7 Regional Executive Director, Atty. Salvador Diputado, who led the planting in Ubay said DA is pushing to revive the coffee industry, which is declining due to so many reasons.

Report of the DA and Department of Trade and Industry states that the country’s production volume of coffee is decreasing by 2.87 percent annually, and the production yield is decreasing 2.23 percent annually.

DA-7 High Value Crops Development Program coordinator John Dennis Ranario bared that the agency is procuring planting materials of Robusta coffee to expand the coffee production in Central Visayas.

Ranario added that in Region 7, coffee production areas are in Bohol, Cebu, Negros Oriental, with the town of Tuburan, Cebu considered as coffee basket in Central Visayas.

He added that under the HVCD program, DA-7 will provide trainings and planting materials to farmers in the region identified to increase coffee production.

Diputado said coffee planting in Ubay Stock Farm is part of the high value crops field that the DA is establishing in parts of the stock farm to make idle lands productive.

“This activity is in accord with the Plant, Plant, Plant program of Agriculture Secretary William Dar,” Diputado added.

According to the Philippine Statistics Authority, Central Visayas has 1,047,765 coffee fruit bearing plants with 104MT production in 2015. This contributes 0.3 percent share of the total coffee production in the country.

Meanwhile, in accord with Agriculture Secretary William Dar’s “plant, plant, plant” program, some areas of DA-7 like the USF have been transformed into a vegetable field.

Diputado said the underutilized areas of the stock farm are now being planted with corn, peanuts, mung beans, soya beans, and other veggies, while other areas are also planted with high value crops like Ubi and fruits such as pineapple.

While the USF is dedicated as a livestock research, production and development center, it has available areas for expansion of pasture development, which can be utilized as crop production areas.

After an ocular inspection conducted the previous month, Diputado in consultation with the USF in-charge, decided to convert some parts of the stock farm into a vegetable and fruit production area.

“We transformed some parts of the USF into a productive area in response to the call of Secretary William Dar, to increase food production and to develop idle lands for food security especially during this time of pandemic,” Diputado explained.

He added that the area has a newly-installed irrigation system for the said purpose and very soon, a drip irrigation system.

The USF is the oldest livestock facility in the country which was established in 1917 as an animal holding during the American occupation. The stock farm has a total land area of 3,600 hectares and is also an accredited livestock training facility in the Visayas and Mindanao. JMO (FREEMAN)

DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
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