DA developing Negros Occidental as pilot area for community-based coffee processing enterprise

October 5, 2016 10:53 am 

BACOLOD CITY, Oct. 4 — The Department of Agriculture-Philippine Center for Postharvest Development (DA-PhilMech) is developing Negros Occidental as a model site for community-based coffee processing enterprise.

The project, which aims to improve the product’s quality through the provision of post-harvest and processing facilities and equipment to coffee farmers, was discussed by PhilMech Supervising Science Research Specialist Helen Martinez during the 1st National Convergence Meeting held at the Negosyo Center here Monday.

The Cabacungan Integrated Social Forestry Association in La Castellana town has been identified as the recipient by the DA Regional Field Office 6 and Office of the Provincial Agriculturist (OPA) as validated by PhilMech.

It will be provided with facilities and equipment, which will comprise the coffee processing plant, amounting to at least Php 2 million.

Martinez said that through the project, PhilMech is ensuring that the facilities and equipment provided by DA are ideal to the existing needs of the farmers and producers.

Through the post-harvest system for Arabica and Robusta coffee, PhilMech is working to improve the technology to produce good quality green bean.

“Our priority is producing quality green bean as it is the immediate source of income of farmers,” Martinez said

Aside from the facilities and equipment, the coffee farmers will also receive support services like training and workshops on entrepreneurship, business planning, and capability building to be given also by other members of the project team like OPA, Provincial Environment and Management Office, and local government units.

Martinez said the schedule of the establishment of the coffee processing plant will depend on the regional line agency, “but most probably within the year.”

“After developing the Cabacungan Integrated Social Forestry Association in La Castellana, we are eyeing to replicate the same project in other groups in the province,” she added.(PNA)

RMA/NLG/EPN

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