BAGUIO CITY – Some eight hundred coffee industry stakeholders will be converging in the city for the Second National Coffee Congress which will be held at the Hotel Supreme Convention Plaza on November 23-25, 2016 to discuss the prospects of the Philippine coffee industry in relation to the prevailing trends in the global market.
Myrna Pablo, regional director of the Cordillera office of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI-CAR), said speakers from Brazil, the top coffee producer, and Vietnam, the second top coffee producers in the world, will be among those who will be sharing their best practices on how coffee production in their respective countries thrived to become one of their major export products.
Pablo admitted there has been a decline in the coffee production in recent years mostly due to aging trees and poor farming practices as well as the conversion of coffee to other cash crops.
The DTI-CAR official said increasing the production and yield of coffee could make the Philippines gain from the booming market of coffee.
According to her, in a bid to revitalize the coffee industry and regain the country’s early distinction as the major coffee producer in Asia during the colonial period, the agency and the agriculture department, in coordination with concerned industry stakeholders, convened the first Philippine Coffee Congress in the city in 2013.
Pablo claimed the upcoming gathering will look back and revisit the wider scope of the coffee industry development in the country and it will once again put the country’s key players in the said industry under one roof to brace each other and scour for opportunities in the coffee business.
Further, it will also update the participants on the country’s coffee road map so that they could look forward and aim for the bigger and brighter spot in the world’s coffee industry.
Among the activities lined up for the 3-day gathering include coffee painting and photography contest, coffee pavilion, coffee cupping, dialogue with the different coffee councils, industry updates, business matching, breakaway sessions and site visits.
Pablo asserted the conference will set the baseline for the coffee industry under the new administration to make coffee one of the major cash crops produced in strategic areas of the country.
The 3-day gathering aims to present the coffee industry status and the official Philippine coffee road map 2017-2022, update the coffee industry stakeholders on the contemporary knowledge and information about coffee businesses and available support systems, discuss best practices and experiences of selected entrepreneurs and their respective business models, and business matching for improved complementation and networking in the coffee industry cluster.
The introduction of coffee to the country in the 18th century paved way for a new market in the country and the country’s location is excellent for growing coffee since it is among the few that produces the four varieties of coffee which are Arabica, Robusta, Excelsa, and Liberica./By Dexter A. See