The 5th Regional meeting of the Asean Coffee Federation will be held in Manila on February 17 and 18, 2012. The past four meetings of the year-old confederation have been held in Pattaya, Laos, Singapore and the last one was in Bangkok, Thailand just last September. The Philippines was represented by , Chair of the Philippine Coffee Board, Inc (PCBI) and Emmanuel U. Torrejon, President of the Specialty Coffee Association of the Philippines(SCAP).
The event will be announced to the coffee industry during the opening of the COFFEE ORIGINS 2011 festival on October 7 at 6 pm at the Greenbelt 5 Gallery, Ayala Center. National Competitiveness Council Chair Guillermo M. Luz (who is a founder of the PCBI) will deliver the inspirational talk during the opening.
Everyone but everyone who is in the coffee business will be witness to a “signing ceremony” where the coffee stakeholders will sign their commitment and support for the ASEAN Coffee Federation. The formation of this body for coffee is timely as 2015 is fast approaching and coffee producers, importers and exporters will no longer pay tariffs and will make it an even playing field for all Asean member countries.
The Philippines continues to encourage its farmers to meet the domestic demand of 65000 MT as production levels have remained at the 30000MT level for many years now. If we do not plant more coffee, we may lose our competitiveness in the region.
The PCBI is at the forefront of the coffee initiatives from the private sector. PCBI chair Matti was recently appointed as Committee on Coffee chair in the Philippine Chamber of Agriculture and Food Inc. while PCBI director Joel Lumagbas is also appointed as a Trustee of the policy advocacy organization.
Meanwhile, Pacita Juan, President of the PCBI has been asked to join the International Women’s Coffee Alliance (IWCA) to represent women coffee farmers and women-owned coffee businesses. Juan will gather all women groups in coffee through her network of NGOs and Microfinance partner organizations.