Programs for coconut industry need to be harmonized: official

THERE IS a need to unify coconut industry programs and efforts of both government and the private sector, said a government official on Monday.

Philippine Coconut Authority project development officer Rosella Villaruel said the move seeks to address the major problems that have beset the industry, particularly low productivity of coconut farmers.

Villaruel said tthe Davao region continues to be the coconut key production area as it is still the top producer in terms of rate per hectare, although current yields can still be increased significantly if programs are unified by both public and private sectors.

On average, the Davao Region produces 67 nuts per tree per year. The target of PCA for the Davao Region is to bring this number to 100.

The national average is 47.

This low productivity has a big effect on the income of farmers.

If the programs for coconut farmers are unified, she said that it will be easy for farmed to plant coconut varieties with higher yield and to access fertilizers and other resources.

A culmination of experts and farmers will happen on July 27-29 and will hope to solve the problems of the industry.

She added that in the conference, topics on climate change will also be discussed.

El Niño has altered the production of coconuts and it dropped by about 30 percent.

But the effect can only be felt a year later.

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