Region is RP’s cacao capital

THE REGIONAL Development Council XI (RDC XI) has named the region the country’s cacao and chocolate capital as it noted its huge production.

Based on its approved resolution, the council adopted the proposal of their economic development committee (EDC) to declare Davao Region as the cacao and chocolate capital of the Philippines.

“This council further acknowledges the significance of adopting a regional branding for the cacao industry to actively promote public and private sector engagement in the industry,” RDC XI said.

With the declaration, Maria Belenda Q. Ambi, regional director of Department of Trade and Industry XI and chair of EDC of RDC XI, told the TIMES they would pursue plans to continuously boost the production of the crop and implement value-adding.

“We would like to take pride on the fact that we are strong in cacao production,” Ambi said.

The RDC XI said the region is the biggest producer of the crop in the country that contributed an average of 80% of the total production. The region’s production has been increasing since 2010 at average of six percent from 2010-2016.

Data from Philippine Statistics Authority bared that the region’s volume of production reached to 5,073.83 metric tons last year, increasing from 4,920.27 metric tons in 2015. The region contributed mostly of Philippines’ production of 6,262.77 metric tons as of last year.

RDC XI’s resolution cited that there are 20,000 farmers engaged in cacao farming while there are over 100 cacao nurseries with combined production capacity of about 10 million seedlings. The region has 10 cacao training centers.

The region, RDC XI said, is the center of cacao trade in the country and the home to about 100 chocolate processors. It is also able to develop a distinct chocolate variety using coconut sugar, the council said.

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