THE Department of Agriculture (DA)-Davao said it will focus on promoting high-value crops in the region that can help in the recovery of the agricultural sector.

In spite of the slow growth of Davao Region’s agricultural sector in 2021, DA Secretary Dr. William Dar said Davao Region, as the major agri-business center in the country, has the potential to further grow as a major agricultural player in the country.

DA-Davao Executive Director Abel Monteagudo, who was also present at the press conference, said Davao Region is known for high-value crops, such as cavendish bananas, cacao, and coffee, rather than rice or other commodities.

He said majority of the Philippine’s supply of these crops are provided for by the region.

In fact, Davao City is known to produce 80 percent of the cacao supply of

the country and was recently declared as the cacao capital, while Davao Region is top two producer of coffee next to Soccsksargen and a top exporter of cavendish bananas.

Dar and Monteagudo said that focusing on the region’s agricultural strength can help fully recover the region’s agricultural sector.

“We are hoping this year fully recovered ang Davao Region and can contribute much higher. Pinapalakas po natin yung mga planning and implementation ng iba’t-ibang programa dito sa Davao Region,” the secretary said.

But Monteagudo said that DA-Davao is also addressing pressing issues that the high-value crops sector is facing.

“We hope to really help them through with their problems on the fertilizer side, disease side,” he said.

In line with this, the DA is set to provide financial assistance to the agri sector such as the Rice Farmers Financial Assistance wherein each farmer tilling two hectares or less will receive an ayuda of P5,000.

Meanwhile, corn farmers and the fishery sector will receive an assistance worth at least P1 billion, which allocates at least P3,000 of subsidy for each beneficiary that will assist the farmers amid rising fuel prices.

Dar said the DA is working on immediately distributing the said subsidies.