In line with the celebration of the National Organic Agriculture (OA) Month, the National Banner Program Committee on High Value Crops-Fruits and Vegetables discussed updates on the implementation of the Organic Agriculture Act of 2010.

After the presentation of the National Organic Agriculture Program in the Committee’s fourth quarter meeting on November 10, 2022, the body agreed that there is a need for additional marketing support for OA practitioners, especially in penetrating the international market.

One of the suggestions of the Committee was for the Department of Agriculture (DA)-Agribusiness and Marketing Assistance Service to organize and participate in international trade fairs, starting this 2023.

With many governments slowly lifting the pandemic protocols, the Committee agreed that it is time to enhance the exposure and market reach of organic products.

The body also recommended for the DA and other concerned agencies to allocate funds and help OA practitioners acquire international certifications for exporting their products.

On the other hand, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration warned the Committee members of the three to six tropical cyclones expected to enter/develop in the Philippine Area of Responsibility from November 2022 to April 2023. 

This information could help and remind them to plan their crop calendar and prepare for the possible damages of tropical cyclones on their crops. 

The Philippine Council for Agriculture and Fisheries also updated the Committee on the policy recommendations generated during the first Ugnayan and Agritalakayan on October 12 to 13, 2022.

The two-day activity aimed to develop a shared understanding among the industry stakeholders on the impact of urban agriculture on rural vegetable production and the existence of a resilient vegetable supply chain management system.Among the recommendations were the conduct of a feasibility study on the establishment of germplasm and seed banks in strategic areas and the crafting/updating of the Philippine National Standards for vegetables. | JCL