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DA, Nestlé send coffee experts to train in France
by Catheryn Villorente - Wednesday, 9 March 2016, 04:32 PM
www.philstar.com: February 28, 2016

MANILA, Philippines - Two research specialists from the Department of Agriculture will undergo a three-month training program at Nestle’s Research and Development Center in France to learn the mass propagation of Robusta coffee varieties.

Among the two specialists were DA Science Research Specialist Fe Abragan and Science Research Specialist II Lucille Minguez.

DA and Nestlé have co-sponsored the training initiative to fulfill one of the provisions of the Enhanced National Convergence Initiative (NCI) memorandum of agreement signed in 2009.

The Enhanced NCI is comprised of the Departments of Agriculture, Agrarian Reform, and Environment and Natural Resources, which are collaboratively implementing strategies to facilitate the convergence of resources in support of agribusiness investment projects.

The NCI seeks to maximize impact on countryside development and has the mandate to develop the agriculture sector in the country by providing appropriate support services to improve farm productivity, profitability, market competitiveness and the long-term sustainability of farmers.

Recognizing that coffee is one of the priority agricultural commodities, the NCI aims to launch a nationwide coffee development program to help improve farmers’ income and make the Philippines a major producer of this high value crop once again.
The training is one of the concrete steps being undertaken under the NCI, and is in line with the Nescafé Plan, a global initiative of Nestlé aimed at creating shared value by supporting responsible coffee farming, production and consumption, including the security of farmers’ livelihoods and respect for the environment.

Sending off the two specialists were Nestlé Philippines chairman and CEO Jacques Reber, Corporate Affairs head Ernie Mascenon and other members of the company’s Nescafé Plan Steering Committee, namely Technical Director Peter Winter, and Coffee and Creamer Creations business executive manager Don Howat.

Representing Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala was Assistant Director Jenny Remoquillo of the DA-Bureau of Plant Industry High Value Crops Development Program.

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