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News: 3 cocoa post harvest centers worth P30 million set to open in Mindanao - 29 Aug 2010
Three cocoa post harvest centers worth P30 million are set to be opened next month in Davao, Compostela Valley, and Zamboanga del Norte and are seen to contribute to the country’s production of high quality beans.The establishment of the post harvest centers is part of the implementation of a cocoa roadmap aimed at raising the country’s production in order to meet the increasing demand for cocoa beans locally and internationally. It is estimated that cocoa beans’ demand globally grows at a rate of 90,000 metric tons (MT) annually. 
“Our farmers can now bring their wet beans to our post harvest centers. With the centers, we hope to achieve our target in our cocoa roadmap,” said Josephine Ramos, Cocoa Foundation of the Philippines (Cocoaphil) operations manager, in an interview.The post harvest centers will have several facilities, depending on the need in the area, according to Ramos. Among these will be a fermentation facility, solar and hybrid drying facilities, a warehouse, a nursery, a budwood garden, and a training center particularly for the Davao center.The construction of the post harvest centers was funded through a combination of sources including the Department of Agriculture-High Value Commercial Crops. The Zamboanga center also has partner-funders from private farms.The Davao post harvest center will have a processing capacity of 12 MT per load while the Compostela Valley and Zamboanga centers, six MT per load.

The cocoa roadmap plans the construction of more post harvest centers nationwide particularly in areas where cacao is being intercropped with coconut lands. It is planned that 10 percent of all coconut lands in the country should be intercropped with cocoa.

Source: Manila Bulletin Online, by Melody Aguiba, Business Section, 08/29/2010
Posted By: PhilCTTIS Data Center 
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