THE Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) drafted a proposal for the creation of a Philippine Coffee Council under an Executive Order to ensure proper implementation of 2017-2022 Coffee Roadmap of DTI.

DTI Compostela Valley Provincial Director Lucky Siegfred Balleque said, through a phone interview, this proposal was first laid down during the Philippine Coffee Conference in Baguio November of last year. This was one of the resolutions that were released by the conference.

The DTI is still drafting and finalizing the proposal to be made and no official executive order proposal had been submitted yet but, according to Balleque, they hope to have it finished within the year.

If pushed through, the Philippine Coffee Council will serve as the central institution that will consolidate and coordinate the efforts of all concerning government agencies such as DTI and the Department of Agriculture and different coffee institutions for the coffee industry.

The Philippine Coffee Council will be a government-based institution much different from the Philippine Coffee Board, a private organization, which primarily helps in the promotion of coffee products in the country. The latter is also responsible for joining international competitions and conferences to further promote Philippine coffee in the international market.

Balleque said there is an increasing demand for quality coffees, not just for export to other countries but even here in the Philippines as coffee shops had also begun to emerge.

The Coffee Roadmap presented during the Philippine Coffee Conference in Baguio contained a benchmarking of Philippine coffee versus the best-known coffees of Indonesia and Vietnam. It also contains the selected stakeholders and players that are involved with the coffee supply chain: from input supply, farm production, primary processing, marketing/trading, secondary processing, financing, researching, etc.

With the mission to develop “a cost-competitive, quality-driven, supply-reliable, product-diversified value chain from farming,” the coffee roadmap targets to increase production and improve farmers’ living through high value agriculture. It also aims to increase rural employment, lessen coffee bean and coffee products importation, and to promote environment-friendly technologies.