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Over 2K Guimaras farmers will benefit from the coco processing center.

More than 2,000 coconut growers in the province are anticipated to benefit from the over PHP16 million shared processing facilities for copra and refined bleached deodorized oil that will be built inside the 10-hectare Guimaras agri-fishery industrial community in Barangay Sapal, Nueva Valencia municipality.

In an interview after the groundbreaking ceremony on Friday, Guimaras Governor JC Rahman Nava stated that because the farmers are organized, the joint processing facilities will give them additional markets and copra.

“When we say additional market, it gives options to our farmers, particularly coconut farmers, and we are confident that it can benefit them in terms of increasing their income since we provide a steady and added market,” he said.

According to the governor, behind palay, coconut is the province’s second-most popular product. Their star product, the mango, comes in third.

Alvin Nava, the director of the Guimaras Provincial Office for Agricultural Services, stated in an interview that according to information from the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA), around 7,859 hectares of the province’s agricultural land are planted with coconut trees.

According to PCA-Guimaras, there are 651,894 bearing and 117,331 non-bearing trees.

Their primary goods, primarily sold in the local and Iloilo markets, are copra, matured coconut, also known as lahin, and young coconut, also known as buko.

The project, which will be carried out by the Philippine Center for Post-Harvest Development and Mechanization (PhilMech), will be accelerated, according to the governor, even though an agreement with the cooperating agencies has not yet been reached because there are more than 10 government agencies involved.

Even though the project will be run by their cooperative, the provincial government will be present to oversee it because it is located on their land.

The shared processing facilities are a crucial part of the Coconut Farmers and Industry Development Plan (CFIDP) of the coco-levy trust fund, according to Ryan Monceda of the PCA Project Management Office, who gave an overview of the project.

The project addresses the third goal of the CFIDP, which is to improve agricultural productivity through the rehabilitation and modernization of the coconut industry.

The shared facilities will provide manufacturing, packaging, labeling, storage, and marketing services for the distribution of chosen coconut goods to domestic and worldwide markets.

Additionally, it will be furnished with trucks, equipment for harvesting coconuts, fundamental testing tools, and processing ancillary equipment.

While the Agricultural Training Institute will be in charge of the training, the Department of Trade and Industry is anticipated to help with the marketing.

Among other things, the Cooperative Development Authority will lead the development of a farm service group, while the Department of Public Works and Highways will investigate infrastructure support.

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