CEBU

6 cacao farmers to compete in 2021 Int’l Cocoa Awards

THE Covid-19 pandemic has caused setbacks in the economic growth and industry development of the country. But despite the challenges faced, the Philippine Cacao Industry Council has strived to continue its commitment to move towards a prosperous cacao industry promoting inclusion and convergence among industry stakeholders.

At the start of the year 2021, the Philippine Cacao Industry Council, led by chairperson and Consul Armi Lopez Garcia, is set to submit the country’s entries for the Cocoa of Excellence Program and International Cocoa Awards, a global competition participated in by 55 countries across the world.

The Cocoa of Excellence Program was established to safeguard cocoa flavor diversity and improve farmers’ livelihoods through the promotion of high quality cocoa origins.

In October 2020, the Philippine Cacao Industry Council launched the 2021 Edition of the Philippine Cacao Quality Award (PCQA). PCQA is a national cacao quality competition to promote high-quality cacao beans and celebrate the skills and expertise of Filipino cacao farmers.

In the competition, 23 entries from producing regions competed for the top six best cacao beans. Following the selection and evaluation of the PCQA-Technical Working Committee chaired by Charita Puentespina, Garcia officially announced and recognized the top six winners of the Philippine Cacao Quality Award Competition.

“The results are very encouraging. I am indeed very happy that the candidates come from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. This is an indication that our country is now gearing up to promote our Philippine Cacao to the world. Hopefully, we can have a winner this year so that our quota will be increased from six to seven entries. To prepare for the next competition come 2023, the Philippine Cacao Industry Council in cooperation with the Department of Agriculture and the other government agencies concerned, will endeavor to intensively educate our cacao farmers on the good agricultural practices as well as on the post-harvest technologies so that we can generate more entries to choose from to improve our chances of winning,” Garcia said in a statement.

The top six best cacao beans for the 2021 edition of the Philippine Cacao Quality Competition in no particular order are as follows:

  • Region 6 - Christopher Fadriga – Brgy. Atipuluan, Bago City, Negros Occidental
  • Region 11 - Arthur Lagoc - Talandang, Tugbok, Davao City
  • Region 11 - Solidad Robillo - Ong Village, Gumalang, Davao City
  • Region 11 - Carlos Barsicula - Purok Cacao, Brgy. Sawata, San Isidro, Davao del Norte
  • Region 11 – Edwin Rodulfa – Manuel Guianga, Davao City
  • Region 3 – Sherwin Paul Barrameda – Dipaculao, Baler, Aurora
The Cocoa of Excellence Program is the entry point for cocoa producers to participate in the International Cocoa Awards, the most prestigious global competition that recognizes the work of cocoa farmers and celebrates the quality and flavor diversity of cocoas produced around the world.

The awarding ceremony will take place at the Salon du Chocolat in Paris in October 2021, the biggest international annual trade fair for the cocoa and chocolate industry. This year, the Philippines has been give six slots for the competition. (PR)

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