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PIA Press Release
2007/09/22

Lagawe aims to become Ifugao's Arabica capital

by Jina Shirley G. Dacmay

LAGAWE, Ifugao (22 September) -- To make Lagawe the "Arabica Capital" of the province, the Local Government Unit (LGU) here, in partnership with the Department of Industry (DTI) and other stakeholders redirected the One -Town, One Product (OTOP) to organically grown Arabica.

Arabica coffee variety is the most important traded commodity next to oil in the world market and is the primary export of many developing countries. It is a high value crop which sells at P110.00 per kilo and has reached as high as P170.00 per kilo last cropping. It is admired for its aroma and taste by coffee drinkers and much preferred by big local and international companies.

Valentin Baguidudol, DTI Provincial Director in his presentation of the global and national state of coffee industry, pointed out that while there is "Crisis in Coffee industry", particularly because of poor quality and oversupply as a result of the absence of international quality standards, still, we find some opportunities in small industry players which sustains prices, he said.

Moreover, Sharon Sarol, Secretary to the Mayor and OTOP focal person said the re-direction of the OTOP is influenced by the viability of the crop, its value and its market.

"We would want to grow Arabica and make it our prime product that would identify us', she added.

To do this, the LGU with the help of barangay officials and the Municipal Agriculture Office would identify and support potential farmers to plant coffee and sustain the quantity, quality and volume of coffee produced.

While Robusta and some exelsa and Liberica which is the biggest exported coffee in the Philippines, abound in most barangays here, the LGU would want to concentrate on Arabica with its bigger market value.

Some barangay official are hesitant arabica might not grow and yield well as experienced by some farmers who previously planted this variety but the fears were allayed by concerned agencies that with the right technological skills applied, Lagawe can be the Arabica Capital of Ifugao in the future. (PIA Ifugao) [top]

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