Dissertation: Viability of Coconut Production and Trade

Pages: 33 (9960 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1+  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Agriculture  ·  Buy This Paper

Viability of Coconut Production and Trade in the Philippines

FEASIBILITY AND PROFITABILITY

Summary of Findings, Conclusion and Recommendations

Many decades past, the Philippine economy was largely dependent on agriculture

(Albert 2013). It gradually became less and less dependent from a third at 29.7% in 1946 to only 11.1% in 2012. The 2011 Gross Regional Domestic Product reported that Central Luzon or Region 3 and IVA or CALABARZON are the top contributors to the sector at 13.8% and 9.5%, respectively. Of the regions, agriculture has the largest share in the economy of the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao or ARMM. This region also has one of the highest poverty levels at 45.9% as of 2009 (Albert).

The Philippine Coconut Authority (2014), the sole government agency responsible for the full development of the coconut industry, points to it as the leading agricultural sector. It says that 3.1M hectares of the 12 million hectares of farmlands are planted to coconut; 68 of the 79 Philippine provinces are classified as coconut areas; and as of last agency count, there were 324 million bearing and non-bearing coconut trees. There are currently 35 million coconut farmers in the country whose products account for 1.14% of the country's GNP. Overall and despite the decline in the dependence of the economy on agriculture, 25 million Filipinos still directly or indirectly depend on the industry for their livelihood and survival. Their coconut production also accounts for large 59% share of the world's coconut exports. These exports earn the country an average net income of U.S.$760 million annually (PCA). It is veritably the "Tree of Life (Delmo 2012)" for its versatility. It can be used for food, housing, fuel, furniture, decorations and other uses. Its meat and water can be eaten and drunk. It can be converted into oil, leaves, fuel, husk, pith, shell, medicine, and dye (PCA, Delmo).

This study seeks to determine how viable coconut production as an enterprise in Region 5 today. It intends to answer the following questions:

1. what is the overall condition and potentials of the coconut production in the;

country;

2. The current conditions and feasibility of such an enterprise in Region 5, specifically Camarines Sur, Siruma and Butawanan.;

3. The legal and physical requirements of setting up the enterprise; and

4. actual and projected barriers or issues for the enterprise and their solutions

The purpose of this study is to obtain sufficient, accurate and appropriate information on the feasibility, profitability and requirements of starting a coconut production business in Butawanan, Siruma, Camarines Sur in Region 5 or Bicol Region

The significance of this study lies in its modest contribution to the improvement of the coconut industry in the village, town, province and regional levels by providing increased employment to the residents of Butawanan. Directly or indirectly, this will uplift their living conditions economically and socially.

This study will use the conceptual framework of food security of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. The two determinants, namely physical and temporal, influence this framework. The physical determinant consists of the food flow, in turn characterized by availability, accessibility and utilization. Availability is achieved if sufficient food is ready for the target population's consumption. Accessibility or access is achieved when the targeted households and all the members possess enough resources to secure appropriate foods for their nutrition. And adequate utilization means the capability of the targets' bodies to take in and use the food produced. Utilization is adequate when the food or diet is nutritious and safe; produced and made available in an adequate biological and social environment; complemented by proper health care to avoid disease and promote the proper use of the food.

The scope and limitation of this study cover the production of 10 new coconut varieties in my 20-hectare property in Butawanan in Siruma, Camarines Sur for a trial period of 3 years, beginning next year and their sale in Mercedez town for a trial period of 5 years starting ____.

II. Review of Literature

The Tree of Life

The coconut tree or cocos nucifera, is called "the Tree of Life" for the multiple uses of almost of its parts as products and by-products (PCA 2014). Its meat can be made into coco flour, dessicated coconut, coconut milk, coconut chips, candies, local sweetened shredded coconut meat, latik and animal feeds. Copra is the dried meat derived from the coconut fruit. It is 64% oil but is most easily digestible as compared with other oils. It provides energy, delays aging, and can be used as detergent, lard, chemical, crude oil, hair dressing, margarine, butter and cooking oil. Its leaves can be converted into paper, brooms, hats and mats, fruit mats, bags and roof materials. Coconut is eaten as ingredient in salads, desserts, pastries and directly as buko as a refereshing drink. When mature, coconut can be made into dessert and special menus. Its sap or water was recently discovered to have curative value for renal disorders. Coconut husk has brittle fibers, mattress fibers, and coir dust, which are made into brushes, doormats, carpets, bags, ropes, yam fishing nets and mattresses. Its pith can be made into coco pickles and desserts like guinatan and lumpia. It can also be used to make helmets, caps, shoe straps, fans, house decors like lamps shades and flowers to adorn the table. It can also be made into fermented or alcoholic juice, multi-purpose shells, and wood for benches, tables, carvings, picture frames and construction materials from its trunk and roots (PCA).

Towering coconut trees are an almost ubiquitous and refreshing sight in both the countryside and the urban areas in the Philippines (Hub Pages 2014). They are easy to recognize and have become a national symbol. Recent statistics say that 25% of the country's total cultivated lands are planted to coconut. The Philippines ranks second in coconut production only to Indonesia but the top exporter of coconut oil to the world market. The Food and Agricultural Organization was quoted in 2009 that the Philippines had become the top coconut producer at 19,500 tons ahead of Indonesia at 15,319,500 (Hub Pages).

A large percentage of the population depends on coconut farming for their livelihood (Batanes 2012). Coconut farmers have a characteristically pleasant and peaceful life style and environment. They live at a comfortable distance from the noise and rush of metropolitan areas, especially Metro Manila, which is preferable to them even in exchange of lesser income. The air in coconut plantation areas is clean and cool in contrast to the polluted air of Metro Manila and other cities. Winds bring cool air from these trees and overall vegetable even during summer, which is almost intolerable in the metropolis (Batanes).

Coconut land owners employ laborers who do not own land and pay them wages (Batanes 2012). They are hired to harvest every 2 or 3 months according to the volume of the yield and the number of harvesters depends on the size of the plantation. A hectare needs only one or 2 harvesters. If the tree is tall, the harvester climbs it to pick the coconuts. If the tree is young and short, the harvester uses a long bamboo with a sharp knife at the top point to snip mature coconuts from the crown of the tree (Batanes).

Copra and How it is Made

Copra is the dried finished product of coconut for selling (Batanes 2012). The merchant who buys it, in turn, sells the product to coconut oil mills. The process of making copra consists of seven steps. These are harvesting, piling and hauling, de-husking, halving the coconut, drying and scooping from the shell. Traditional coconut harvesting is considered one of the hardest in the world. The harvester climbs to the top of a coconut tree and cuts or disengages the fruits one by one with a sharp and slightly curved knife. He can tell which are mature enough for picking and making into copra. If the tree is young, the harvester makes alternate cuts upwards on which to step when climbing to the top. As he climbs, someone else on the ground gathers and piles the coconuts that fall on a carabao-driven bamboo cart. A carabao is a water buffalo. When the harvesting is finished, the carabao is driven to the work area where the harvested coconuts are taken down and piled again. At the work area, the harvesters manually de-husk or remove the coconut husks with a sharp steel instrument, which is attached to a piece of wood for support. The harvesters cut through one side of the coconut with this instrument about four or five times until the husk is completely removed. The task is difficult and arduous as it requires much strength and energy. The coconuts are then split into halves with the use of the back of the cleaver. Cutting must be made in a straight line, crosswise and performed in a quick and powerful motion with one hand. The other hand holds the coconut against a hard and flat surface.… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Viability of Coconut Production and Trade.  (2014, April 30).  Retrieved March 23, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/viability-coconut-production-trade/3782400

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