Cacao is newest champion product of Zampen region PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 07 July 2015 11:39

Zamboanga Peninsula’s climactic conditions and soil characteristics are ideal for growing cash crop cacao, RDC 9  Economic Development Chair Pocholo N. Soliven said in a resolution sponsored during the 151st Regional Development Council-9 quarterly meeting held at Centro Latino, endorsing cacao as an emerging champion product of the region.

Cacao is a highly sought after and prized raw material for confectioneries, butter and energy drink. Tthe demand for this raw material is steadily rising,and its supply is way beyond  the production .

“Cacao is considered an equatorial crop that thrives best on regions near the equator, hence cacao planting is the way to go, Cacao can also be intercropped with coconut or abaca providing new opportunities for farmers to maximize productivity in their lands as well as improving profitability,” Soliven said.

Soliven  informed the RDC 9 that Zamboanga Peninsula is contributing 161.4 metric tons or a measly 3% of cacao beans production to the country’s average of 5,380 metric tons annually. There are already efforts toward increasing production in the region and take advantage of its highly economic potential in the world market.

The currently declared Zampen champion products are rubber, coconut, mango, carrageenan, fish and fish products.

Cacao will join abaca as the newest emerging champion product of  Zampen.

If a product is declared a “champion “, RDC Economic Development can compel all government line agencies to support cacao through policies, programs and financial support aim at adding value to the product, Soliven said. — Robert C. Francisco