_’Value chain’study of calamansi carried out to beef up 170 MT export to UAE, Hongkong
December 11, 2018
A “value chain study of calamansi is being carried out to beef up output and some 170 metric tons (MT) of export of fresh and processed fruits per year shipped to Hongkong, UAE, and Saudi Arabia.
The Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) has supported Bureau of Agricultural Research’s (BAR) piloting of the project in Oriental Mindoro.
“There are gaps and constraints in the calamansi industry that limit its potential to increase income and generate the much-needed employment for the calamansi-growing communities in Oriental Mindoro,” according to SEARCA.
“The project will strengthen capacities of calamansi stakeholders on the improved production and postharvest handling practices, calamansi processing, and entrepreneurship.”
Value chain concept involves creating “value” from activities that have been identified to make a business more profitable. For instance, activities that increase farm sales are hiring sales agents to market a product or training farm experts on pest management practices in order to increase harvest.
Value chain studies enhance a business’s competitiveness and was introduced by economist Michael Porter in his “Competitive Advantage (1985)”.
The country’s calamansi export ranged from 20 to 35 MT in 2008 with an average yearly export of 29.5 MT in fresh fruits.
A value chain advantage may be found in processing more fresh fruits. A total of 144 MT of calamansi juice and concentrate was exported to Hongkong, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia in 2013. An important consideration in this project is on expanding employment and farmer’s income from the business.
Constraints in calamansi sector’s growth include lack of good-quality calamansi seedlings; high incidence of pests and diseases; declining volume of production; huge postharvest losses; limited access to market; inconsistent quality of processed calamansi products; low prices during peak season; and lack of resources, skills, knowledge, and experience in collective marketing among calamansi farmers.
The two-year project aims to address these technical and market constraints.
It intends to improve calamansi production and fruit quality by using proven technologies and practices in integrated pest management, fertilization, off-season fruiting, and postharvest handling.
It will also support the commercialization of calamansi-based products through value chain analysis of processed products, market study, and product enhancement.
Moreover, it will also promote faculty and student exchange for R&D (research and development) and technology transfer and promotion.
The project will build on the gains of SEARCA’s action research program “Piloting and Upscaling Effective Models of Inclusive and Sustainable Agricultural and Rural Development (PUEM-ISARD) that helped revitalize the calamansi industry of Oriental Mindoro.
SEARCA has been implementing PUEM-ISARD with Mindoro State College of Agriculture and Technology (MinSCAT) and the local government units of Oriental Mindoro since 2015.
Recently, Tokyo University of Agriculture (Tokyo NODAI) of Japan also began conducting experiments at the project site to validate the effects of off-season production technologies suitable to the growing conditions of calamansi in Victoria, Oriental Mindoro.
Calamansi is indigenous to the Philippines . The largest production is fromVictoria, Oriental Mindoro.
According to the DA-Philippine Rural Development Program, buyers prefer calamansi from Oriental Mindoro because it has a thicker rind, stronger taste, longer shelf-life, and resists weight loss.
Calamansi, or calamondin, is used primarily as juice, puree, and for souring food.
Production has been declining for 6 years from 199,675 MT and 20,956 hectares in 2008 down to 164,050 MT and 20,246 hectares in 2013.
The decline is due to the greening disease or ”huanglubin’ which decreases yield and causes death of trees, reported the Food and Fertilizer Technology Center (FFTC).
Calamansi is produced primarily from MIMAROPA (Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblom, Palawan– 6,872 hectares), Central Luzon (Zambales, Bulacan, Pampanga, Nueva Ecija, Bataan-1,734ha) and Ilocos Region (1,026ha) in Luzon.
In Mindanao, producers are in Davao Region (1,797 hectares), CARAGA (1,412 hectares) and Zamboanga Peninsula (1,077 hectares).
Yield has been dropping form an average of 9.53MT hectares in 2008 to 8.10 MT in 2013, down to an annual growth rate of -3.18.
A sizable 93% of the volume as of 2013 was used domestically for food and the rest for export.
With production decline, prices has been increasing at P23.13 per kilo in 2013 from only P13.28 per kilo in 2008. End (Growth Publishing for SEARCA).