The Philippine government-hosted Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (Searca) is set to support the coconut industry development plan of Quezon Province in the areas of value addition to coconut products, linkages of farmers to the market and farmers’ organization.
Searca Director Glenn Gregorio said the group is collaborating with the Quezon provincial government to achieve its vision of “a market-driven coconut industry with empowered and resilient farmers, engaging in profitable coconut-based enterprises, contributing to inclusive and sustainable agricultural development.”
Pedcris Orencio, Searca program head for Research and Thought Leadership, said the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist in Quezon Province (OPA-Quezon) presented its program, which aims to establish provincial nurseries for high-yielding coconut varieties, replace senile coconut trees with high-yielding varieties and increase coconut productivity through proper cultural management and fertilization.
OPA-Quezon said the program also has provisions to increase farmers’ income through crop diversification and intercropping of coffee, cacao and banana, and to improve the economic conditions of coconut farmers through engaging into value-adding activities and enterprise establishment.
Since its establishment in 1966, Searca’s main mandate has been to build capacities in agricultural and rural development in Southeast Asia.
From 2020 to 2025, its programs are geared towards accelerating transformation through agricultural innovation to elevate the quality of life of farmers and their families through sustainable livelihoods and access to modern networks and innovative markets.