Fri, 03/01/2024 - 14:05

Libagon, Southern Leyte- In the humble Barangay of Kawayan, this town, the coconut farmers faced a common challenge: one of these is the persistently low price of copra.


Determined to uplift their livelihoods, they eagerly embraced the opportunity presented by the Training on Coconut Farm Business School (FBS)- Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) and Land scale conducted by GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit) in their community.


Through lively discussions and interactive workshops by FBS trainers, the coconut farmers explored various avenues for diversification. They learned the importance of maximizing by-products such as coconut water, husks, and shells, turning them into value-added products like coco coir, charcoal, and virgin coconut oil. Additionally, they discovered the benefits of selling directly to buyers, bypassing middlemen to secure better prices for their produce.


The comprehensive curriculum of the Coco FBS-GAP training covers essential topics, including an introduction to the coconut alliance, understanding the coconut farmer entrepreneur, and creating a farm business cycle. Farmers also learn to diagnose challenges, develop improvement plans, and evaluate their progress.


Furthermore, through collaborative efforts with the Philippine Coconut Authority and Agricultural Training Institute, farmers were introduced to the Coconut Farmers and Industry Development Program (CFIDP). This initiative offers valuable insights into enhanced planting techniques and sustainable resource management, fostering potential for significant improvements in farm operations.


As the sessions progressed, the farmers eagerly absorbed knowledge and practical skills, empowered by the guidance of FBS facilitators. Inspired by newfound insights, they began implementing changes on their farms, eager to transform challenges into opportunities.


According to GIZ, the training aims to increase the productivity of coconut farmers through application of Coconut GAP by improving moisture content of copra, soil fertility management and integrated pest management. Increased incomes through crop diversification and access to potential buyers are also among the expected outcomes of the training.


With the steadfast support of GIZ and its partners, the Coconut FBS-GAP initiative is poised to serve as a beacon of hope and empowerment for the local community, driving sustainable growth and prosperity in coconut farming.