DAVAO CITY – Upland areas in the region are being eyed as planting areas for Arabica coffee, according to a report from the Philippine Information Agency.
“There is no problem in the demand but it is in the supply.” Dawn Albert Pates marketing manager of Coffee for Peace said during her guesting at the Club 888 media forum at Marco Polo Davao on Oct. 2.
She said that the country currently imports $400-million worth of its coffee from foreign sources a far cry from the 1800s when the Philippine islands was one of the chief exporter of coffee in the world.
Coffee for Peace an agri-social enterprise dedicated to peace-building, environmental preservation and upliftment of rural communities through the cultivation of coffee has trained about 972 farmers mostly indigenous peoples living in the areas of Mt. Apo, Mt. Kitanglad and Mt. Matutum to grow coffee.
Pates said that most of the planting areas are already denuded and cleared for cultivation with Arabica coffee a perfect reforestation material since it only needs 25% of sunlight for it to grow hence it can be planted in forests.
Coffee berries are also food for civet cats whose coffee droppings are made into one of the world’s most expensive coffee. Pates said that the presence of civet cats in an area would indicate a healthy and functioning ecosystem.
She said that Arabica grows in highland areas in an elevation of least 900 meters above sea level. Most of the coffee-growing areas in Davao particularly in Tagum, Kapalong and New Bataan are growing Robusta coffee.
Pates said that there is huge market potential for local coffee since international buyers are looking at coffee grown in the Philippines since they consider it as one of the world’s best tasting coffee.
The coffee industry in Davao will be featured during the coming Davao Trade Expo 2013 to be held this October 17-19 at SMX Davao in Lanang of this City.
Source: Philippine Information Agency