ATI Caraga holds two batches of training on GAP Cacao

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ON FIELD: Participants during their actual formative and productive pruning of cacao trees.

LOS ANGELES, Butuan City – The Agricultural Training Institute-Regional Training Center (ATI-RTC) 13 successfully conducted the two batches training course on Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) Cacao Production in the month of July 2019.

This was successfully attended by 66 Agricultural Extension Workers (AEWs), cacao farmers and an entrepreneur who is planning to establish a cacao farm in Caraga. The training was simultaneously conducted in two batches.

The said training aimed to equip the participants with basic knowledge on Cacao Production and to encourage them to adopt the good agricultural practices following the Philippine National Standards for Cacao Production so that they can apply later for GAP Certification.

Engr. Joel M. Laure, HVCDP focal person of ATI-RTC 13, discussed the overview of cacao industry status and prospects of the industry and marketing opportunities as well as the skills in the production practices of cacao, identification of various pests and diseases of cacao and their control measures, management practices and postharvest processing of cacao beans and recordkeeping.

Pedro V. Cruz, formerly Technical Supervisor of Kennemer Foods International (KFI) and now Consultant of Asia Society for Social Improvement & Sustainable Transformation (ASSIST) delivered topic on Sustainable Cacao Production, IPDM, and Cacao Post-Harvest Handling. Vincent M. Soliva, also former Technical Staff of KFI handled all the field demonstrations from staking to primary processing.

Through the GAP training, it is expected that the participants will have an improve farm management to increase yield and lessen the vulnerability of their cacao plants to pests and diseases.

Mr. Jerome O. Esclamado, farmer-participants from Rosario, Agusan del Sur appreciated the important skills he learned in the training “Dako akong pasalamat sa ATI nga nahatagan ug higayon aron makakat-on ug masaksihan ang tinood nga mga dangan ug salot sa cacao. Sa akong pag-apil sa training nahagit ako sa paghatag ug dako nga panahon sa pag- atiman sa akong uma aron masiguro ang akong gidamgo nga kita sa cacao. Labi pa nga nagsugod pako, ang akong nakat-unan maoy akong balunon sa akong pag-uli”.

Participants learned more during the field practicum particularly pruning and harvesting.

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