TAGAYTAY CITY – Eleven clustered farmers cooperative associations (FCAs) coming from the six provinces of the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) represented the region in the first National Cluster Summit of the Department of Agriculture-Farm and Fisheries Clustering and Consolidation (DA-F2C2) Program held last December 12, 2023 in Tagaytay City.
The Summit, themed “Pagkaing Sapat, Ahon Lahat”, is part of the government’s initiative to promote the adoption of clustering and consolidation strategy for stronger linkages among stakeholders, giving importance to developing partnerships and also serves as a venue for learning and unlearning, sharing, networking, and inspiring.
During the summit, the CAR showcased its champion commodities from four clustered presenters that presented the heirloom rice from Mountain Province, Arabica coffee from Sagada, Mountain Province, GAP (Good Agricultural Practice) vegetables from Atok, Benguet, and sugar cane products from Abra. The exhibitors came from eleven clusters in the region.
The F2C2 Program was established in 2020 through DA Administrative Order No. 27 (AO-27) to achieve and benefit from economies of scale, forge stronger linkages among producers to markets and global value chains, and improve the producers’ bargaining and market power.
Earlier this year, DA-CAR initiated AO-27 or its F2C2 Program through its Regional Orientation Consultation and FY2024 Planning Workshop, with the primary objective of orienting various stakeholders about the program, strategies, and targets.
DA-AO 27 sets into motion the previous administration’s farm consolidation and clustering program to attain economies of scale, and enable more farmers, fishers, and agripreneurs to produce and earn more from their toil.
The DA’s F2C2 Program is the first formal, comprehensive, and holistic government initiative to be implemented at the national level.
The summit also reviewed the present market linkage and private sector engagement process being practiced by the clustered FCAs.
The Cordillera region has a total of 76 clustered FCAs under the F2C2 program with 32 clusters validated and 30 other clusters for targeting. Of the 76, 11 were invited to the summit.
The F2C2 programs cover rice with hybrid rice, inbred rice, and heirloom rice; corn and cassava with hybrid yellow corn, OPV white corn, and cassava as its commodity; High Value Crops Development Program covers highland vegetables, arabica coffee, cacao, and potato tubers as its commodity.
Livestock’s commodity includes dairy cattle, beef cattle, and hybrid yellow corn; Fisheries identified tilapia as its commodity; while Organic has organic highland vegetables as its commodity. By JTLlanes