The Department of Agriculture in Region 11 (DA-11) is bullish about the expansion of coffee production areas in the Davao Region to 20,000 hectares in 2022 from the current 16,000.
Melani Provido, DA-11 High-Value Crops Development Program Coordinator, said DA sees an increase in the area, at least by 20 percent, and the production of coffee to 100 percent, or about one metric ton per hectare per year.
In a business forum on Tuesday, Provido said coffee is one of the priority programs of the DA. The agency focuses on specialty coffee.
She said the major cluster areas in the region are Bansalan town in Davao del Sur and the municipality of Maragusan in Compostela Valley Province.
She said DA has started the “Big brother, Small brother” project in Bansalan involving the Balutakay Coffee Farmers Association (Bacofa) and the indigenous peoples coffee farmers in Sitio Alegre.
Provido noted that Balutakay coffee is already known globally as specialty coffee but more supply is needed to meet the increasing demand.
“With the big brother-small brother approach we can help Bacofa with their requirement once the IPs in Sitio Alegre (will) be able to level up their production to quality standards,” she said.
Aside from supplying coffee shops in Davao and Manila, Bacofa also has markets in Japan, USA and Canada.
“The Bacofa’s experience is also what we want for the Alegre coffee farmers to achieve and this is where we will support and assist them,” Provido said.
Bacofa has hundred coffee farmers with 500 hectares of production area while Alegre has 50 farmers with the same area for coffee production.
Provido said Bacofa was a beneficiary of a P10-million government assistance for post-harvest facilities and hauling truck for their operation, capability building and other technology inputs.
The farmers’ association was also supported by the Department of Trade and Industry, ACIDIVOCA, and the local government unit.
DA will also be extending assistance for the construction of a warehouse facility of about a million pesos for 2018. (PNA)