The regional office of the Department of Agriculture is assisting a barangay in Davao del Sur to become a producer of specialty coffee.Melani Provido, the agency’s regional coordinator for High Value Crops Development Program, said that the focus is now on Barangay Alegre in Bansalan after Barangay Balutakay achieved its goal of becoming a producer of specialty Arabica coffee.
Provido said the agency has helped the Balukatay Coffee Farmers Association achieved the goal of its members to become producers of sought-after beans.
She said because of the achievement of the association, the agency is also looking at employing the same strategy to help other villages like Alegre achieve the same goal.
“Right now we have just organized Alegre Vegetables and Arabica Growers Association wherein we want to develop the barangay,” she said, adding that the association in Balutakay will also lend a hand to assist the coffee producers of Alegre.
Among the assistance, she said, will be in enhancing production through capacity building and setting up of infrastructure facilities irrigation, improving harvesting processes and marketing.
The goal, she added, is to increase the yield to at least a metric ton a hectare from about 600 kilograms a hectare at present.
Provido said that the agency has partnered with the Agricultural Cooperative Development International and Volunteers in Overseas Cooperative Assistance (ACDI/VOCA) in implementing the interventions.
“We are happy that ACDI/VOCA is here in Davao Region which is very active on improving the coffee industry,” she said, in reference to the assistance, implemented through the v Philippine Coffee Advancement and Farm Enterprise (PhilCAFE) project.