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Mango laboratory eyed in Davao del Sur: execs

A laboratory that can detect the residue levels of chemicals on mangoes is proposed in Davao del Sur.

Delia M. Ayano, Department of Trade and Industry –Davao del Sur provincial director, said that the proposal is being finalized because there is plan to export mangoes from the province.

“There are groups planning to sell their mangoes abroad, so the proposed laboratory will help them meet the standards that the international markets will set up,” said Ayano last week, adding that the one “spearheading the proposal was Mr. Vic Lao, the honorary consul of New Zealand in Mindanao.”

She was referring to Vicente T. Lao who, aside from being an honorary consul, is also the chair of the Mindanao Business Council.

Lao confirmed the report, saying that the project is still in the planning stage and that New Zealand is helping in drafting the plan for the project. “It is still on the planning stage, but I hope this will be realized,” he told TIMES in a text message, although he did not elaborate.

The province, based on the data of the Philippine Statistics Authority, produced about 90% of the 53,354 metric tons that the entire region produced in 2018. However, the data did not mention whether what the province production during the year included the volume that was produced by the province carved out of about three years ago, Davao Occidental, as the regional data did not include the name of the new province.

Last month, the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) initiated the formation of an industry council during a forum to discuss best industry practices as well as ways to improve crop production.

The forum also identified New Zealand as among the countries that the industry stakeholders wanted their produce to market to.

In a statement after the forum, MinDA said the forum output will become the initial reference in the drafting of a feasibility study on quality assurance systems for fresh mango under the three-year co-investment project between the Philippine government, the New Zealand Embassy and the NZ G2G Partnerships Ltd.

The project, the statement said, will help local mango stakeholders comply with the sanitary and phytosanitary standards of the country and other foreign markets.

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