Farmers, Stakeholders and DA will develop a strategic roadmap for the corn industry

Author: DA Communication Group | September 4, 2021

In consultation with farmers and industry stakeholders, the Ministry of Agriculture (DA) is developing a strategic and strong roadmap for the development of the corn industry to meet the challenges and opportunities of the sector, especially the growing demand for animal feed, food and other industrial uses.

“The corn sector, being a major input for the poultry and pork industries, should be given more prominence and a long-term vision to ensure its sustained contribution to the meat value chain and, in general, to Philippine food systems, ”Agriculture Secretary William Dar said.

“In particular, the roadmap is expected to address the main challenges of the industry, such as much needed investments in the mechanization of agricultural operations to increase productivity and the establishment of post-harvest facilities to minimize waste and reduce storage and crushing costs, including cost-effective logistics and transportation. ‘, said the head of the DA.

“Guided by the roadmap, our ‘OneDA family’ through the national maize program will work doubly to increase the average yield per hectare and achieve savings in the maize-forage-meat value chain, making it more competitive,” did he declare. added.

Currently, the country’s national average yield of yellow corn is 4.18 metric tons (MT) per hectare (ha), but combined with white corn, the total average yield is reduced to only 3.18 MT / ha. On the other hand, the average yield of hybrid maize is at least 8 MT / ha, said Milo delos Reyes, director of the DA maize program.

He added that the DA will focus on increasing the productivity of the main maize producing regions of the country, especially regions 2, 10 and 12, and on providing post-harvest facilities to the clustered farms to improve the production. grain stored quality and reduce waste, and link them directly to corn processors. All of this is aimed at increasing the income of farmers and improving their competitiveness by reducing the cost of corn as a raw material for various uses.

Thus, one of the main features that will be taken into account in the new roadmap will be the need for the private sector, such as seed producers, millers and commercial food manufacturers, to engage in more joint ventures or direct marketing links with organized cooperatives of maize producers. and associations (FCA), said delos Reyes.

“Indeed, the private sector can greatly help improve the productivity and incomes of maize farmers in many parts of the country through such interventions,” Secretary Dar said, adding that the consultation with them is being undertaken by the through the National Poultry, Livestock and Corn Banner Program Committee, and facilitated by the Philippine Agriculture and Fisheries Council (PCAF) of DA.

Consultations with the private sector, corn producers and processors, other industry stakeholders and consumers are undertaken to develop an industry roadmap for the short term (2021-2025), medium term ( 2025-2030) and long term (2030-2040), said delos Reyes.

Hopefully it will be completed and approved by the end of September 2021 at the latest, added Liza Battad, assistant secretary of the AD and director of the PCAF. The CFP is the advisory arm and multi-stakeholder engagement mechanism of the “OneDA Family”.

The Corn Industry Roadmap (RDT) Development Team is also present during the consultations, consisting of technical experts from academia and industry players including the Philippine Maize Federation, Inc. (PhilMaize) which represents corn farmer groups, Battad said.

A review of past government initiatives, including the current regulatory framework for the Philippine corn industry, will be included as the basis for the revised roadmap, added delos Reyes.

Other items under consideration include the necessary government and private sector investments in postharvest facilities, a higher DA budget proposed to directly benefit maize growers, and an improved value chain framework to implement. evidence the contributions of other stakeholders who depend on maize as a staple food. ingredient in the production of poultry, pork and aquaculture, and other products.

“The roadmap should therefore be 100% owned by the industry and meet the aspirations of corn producers and industry stakeholders, who depend on this major commodity as a source of livelihood, employment and income, ”Secretary Dar concluded. ### (DA StratComms)

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