Farmers need to produce quality cacao to compete globally

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Monday, February 24, 2014


CACAO industry players stressed the importance of producing high quality cacao for exporters to compete in the global market even as the Philippines is still a small player in the global cacao market.

Chocolate de San Isidro marketing director Dante R. Muyco Jr., during the Kapihan Session of the Peace and Equity Foundation on February 19 at Hotel Vicente in Davao City, said the Philippines is only contributing less than 1 percent of the total global production of cacao. The country is eyeing to produce 100,000 metric tons (MT) by 2020.

"Because yearly the increase in production worldwide is at 90,000 MT that is why we are advocating quality this time. If we don't have good quality then we don't have any leverage for our products to be sold at premium prices," he said.

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Cacao Industry Development Association of Mindanao Inc. (Cidami) chair Charita P. Puentespina said the global market for cacao is "unlimited" as long as cacao industry players have quality cacao.

"Don't try exporting bad quality beans because nobody will buy it," she said.

Puentespina said cacao farmers should be able to grow the quality bean that is required of the market.

She said that planting of high quality cacao should come after there is a nursery that procures high quality seedlings.

"We should be able to tell the people and the agencies to monitor nurseries so they will sell quality seedlings. They should process it properly," Puentespina said.

She also said that organizations and agency should exert efforts in training and assisting existing cacao farmers to help them boost their yield.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on February 24, 2014.

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