SEARCA helps revive calamansi industry in Oriental Mindoro

  • 9 February 2016, Tuesday

Source: The Philippine Star
7 Feb 2016

MANILA, Philippines - The local government of Oriental Mindoro has partnered with the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) to reinvigorate the town’s calamansi industry.

The agreement signed on Feb.2 aims to rehabilitate the calamansi industry of the local government of Victoria,  Oriental Mindoro to make it economically viable and at the same time environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive.

 “Mindoro is a major producer of calamansi in the country, yet it has been experiencing huge declines in production due to lack of appropriate marketing arrangements and value-adding activities for calamansi” said SEARCA director Gil C. Saguiguit.

The project aims to raise yields, increase production of calamansi-based products, diversify products and markets, and boost income as a result of better prices of products sold and reduced postharvest losses during peak season.

 Saguiguit said the collaborative project is under the auspices of SEARCA’s Pilot and Upscaling Effective Models of Inclusive and Sustainable Agricultural and Rural Development (ISARD) program.

 Through the program, SEARCA brings to local communities effective agricultural systems as models of ISARD that demonstrate increased benefit for poor and vulnerable groups through integrated ground-level development interventions.

 “We involve the local communities, LGUs, and universities in the program to ensure that the stakeholders are empowered to sustain the gains of the program beyond the project life,” Saguiguit said.

 Oriental Mindoro is known as the Calamansi King with more than 50 percent of the country’s calamansi produced there.  

However, it has shown a steady decline in production over the years due to pest infestation, typhoons, ageing trees, unstable market price, and lack of institutional buyers.