By Estrella Z. Gallardo
Among the fastest growing sector of the Benguet economy is the Benguet’s cutflower industry, manifested by its exponential expansion of the plantation within the last five years.
Chrysanthemum is among the most cultivated cutflower, with an average annual production of 1.59 million dozens.
Its production plays an important role to the farmers and the community, with the booming farm tourism in Benguet, especially in the Municipality of La Trinidad.
Relative to this, recognizing this importance, the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST-PCAARRD) recently funded a project on chrysanthemum production in La Trinidad, Benguet.
The project titled, “Enhancing Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) Compliance & Climate Resilience of Spray-Type Chrysanthemum Production in La Trinidad, Benguet,” aims to boost GAP compliance and climate resilience of chrysanthemum farmers in the area.
The project is an offshoot of two recently completed projects on chrysanthemum namely, “Science and Technology Community-Based Farm (STCBF) on Spray-Type Chrysanthemum Production” funded in 2017 and the “S&T Interventions to Enhance Spray-type Chrysanthemum Production through GAP Options” funded in 2018.
STCBF enhanced the quality of spray-type chrysanthemum by increasing the number of Class AA, improving flower color intensity with bigger florets, and reducing pesticide application.
The newly approved project will prepare the cooperators and their farms in developing an eco-friendly and climate resilient environment while reducing synthetic fertilizer use and pesticide applications. This is without compromising the quality of the cutflower and the income of farmers through the application of GAP options for chrysanthemum production.
It will be implemented in five clusters composed of 46 farmer cooperators from major chrysanthemum producing barangays in La Trinidad, Benguet.
Benguet State University, under the leadership of Dr. Carlito P. Laurean, in partnership with the Municipal Agriculture Office of La Trinidad, Department of Tourism, Province of Benguet, Agricultural Training Institute (ATI-CAR), and the La Trinidad Cutflowers and Ornamentals Growers Association (LaTCOGA) will implement the project. (PPCI)
Image Credits: PCAARRD