Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, BASF, and Cargill have partnered to launch a program to develop a certified coconut oil supply chain to enhance sustainability and improve the livelihoods of 2,500 coconut growers in the Philippines. The partnership is co-financed by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) through its program develoPPP.de.
The certified coconut oil supply chain program focuses on smallholder coconut growers in the southern Philippine island of Mindanao. It aims to raise farmers’ incomes by improving productivity and coconut oil quality. It also will introduce the Sustainable Agricultural Network (SAN) standards as a basis for Rainforest Alliance Certification for coconut production.
Farmers already have started the first phase of Good Agricultural Practices training for coconut production. They will be provided with newly designed coconut dryers to improve the quality of copra (coconut meat) and coconut oil. In addition, the project helps provide greater healthcare access for coconut farmers to the country’s health insurance program, PhilHealth.
“Coconut production plays a critical role in the Philippine economy, especially in southern Mindanao,” said Efren Barlisan, General Manager of Cargill’s Grain and Oilseeds business in the Philippines. “The project will help improve the livelihood of thousands of smallholder farmers in the region.”