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PIA Press Release

Davao Norte eyes high value crops

by RG Alama

Davao City (5 September) -- The province of Davao del Norte is eyeing the growing of high-value crops to spur agriculture development in the countryside.

According to Provincial Agriculturist Dominador Encarnacion they are looking at the propagation of Jatropha, Papayas and Cardava bananas which can provide livelihood opportunities in accordance with the RDR WHEELS development agenda of Governor Rodolfo del Rosario.

One such product is papaya, which Encarnacion said is being eyed by an investor who is looking at the possibility of investing in a papaya plantation. "The investor is looking for a 30-hectare farmland which would be planted with Cavite variety papayas."

Encarnacion, said that Cavite variety have reddish flesh and have a ready demand in the European market. "unlike other papayas whose flesh have pale orange color, these variety of papaya because of their reddish flesh are readily exported to Europe." The provincial agriculturist said.

Another crop the province is keen on propagating is Jatropha, which Encarnacion said has a very promising potential. With the passage of the Bio-fuels law, there are many growers of that crop.

"The PNOC (Philippine National Oil Company) recently called for a meeting in Cagayan de Oro amd revealed that they are looking for 100 thousand hectares in which to grow Jatropha." Encarnacion said.

He said they are looking at the unproductive grasslands especially in the denuded hills and mountains of the province as potential areas for the cultivation or jatropha. Aside from potential source of bio-fuel, jatropha is also being eyed for erosion control.

"Jatropha is effective in stopping the topsoil loss." Encarnacion said. (PIA XI) [top]

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