The National Sectoral Committee on Coconut called for an online special meeting with the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) on August 29, 2023 to discuss the implementation status of the Philippine Coconut Industry Roadmap (COCOFIRM) 2021-2040.

With the aim of improving the lives of coconut farmers and the competitiveness of traditional and non-traditional coconut products, the COCOFIRM serves as the backbone of the Coconut Farmers and Industry Development Plan (CFIDP). The CFIDP lays out the allocation of the Coconut Farmers and Industry Trust Fund (CFITF) and the roles of the different implementing agencies in developing the industry and elevating the lives of coco farmers.

On this note, PCA Program Management Office Acting Department Manager Kreisha Ainna Marielle Roque presented the CFIDP 2023 major accomplishments that align with the objectives of the COCOFIRM.

As of July 2023, Roque shared that 74,059 farmers were able to avail the crop insurance policy under the Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation. This is 73% of their target 101,563 farmers this 2023. 

Through the Agricultural Training Institute, 72 out of the 80 information caravans were already conducted while only 55 out of 182 farmer-level trainings were accomplished.

More than 699 coconut products were also developed, introduced, and sold in the market with the involvement of the Department of Trade and Industry in market research, assistance, and promotion. This generated an additional PhP15.64 million in domestic sales and PhP8.79 million in export sales.

Roque reported that the disbursement of implementing agencies relative to the implementation of CFITF programs, as of June 2023, is at PhP349.58 million or 7.28% out of the PhP4,799.67 million total releases for 2023.

To expedite the implementation of COCOFIRM, the Committee passed a policy resolution, recommending to the DA, through the PCA and the PCAF, to spearhead the creation of a technical working group that will assess and review the implementation of activities identified in the roadmap.

The Committee also recommended to the DA, through the PCIC, to allot additional funds to provide life insurance coverage for farm workers and laborers, as part of further improving the social protection among the stakeholders. | Joy Camille Luza