BAGUIO CITY: The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) is encouraging the planting of coffee under the National Greening Program (NGP).
Besides supporting the country’s re-greening effort, planting coffee can also bring in profit to farmers, people’s organizations and indigenous people’s communities.
DENR Cordillera Region Executive Director Clarence Baguilat, who presented the NGP during the Philippine Coffee Congress at the Hotel Supreme here, said that besides Biodiversity Conservation and Climate Change Mitigation/Adaptation, food production and poverty reduction are included in the four-pronged agenda of the program.
Baguilat reported that of the 1.3 million hectares NGP target-planting areas, around 7 percent is allotted for coffee. In the Cordillera, around 9,000 hectares are targeted for coffee. He explained that planting coffee under the NGP can be profitable for people’s organization and indigenous people’s group.
DENR will pay for seedling production and will provide monetary assistance for the planting of trees as well as maintenance and protection of the trees for two years. The produce will go to the farmers.
Meanwhile, Department of Trade and Industry Cordillera Regional Director Myrna Pablo said there is a high demand for coffee both locally and abroad.
The country’s coffee production does not even account for the half of actual coffee demand. That is why in partnership with the Department of Agriculture, they have conducted the coffee conference to spur public and private partnership nationwide in boosting the global competitiveness of the country’s coffee industry and in achieving self-sufficiency,” Pablo said in a statement.
Pablo also advised residents in the upland communities to plant Arabica, which has a more favorable climate advantage in the Cordillera region, and costs almost thrice the price of Robusta that comprises 70 percent of the country’s coffee production.