February 9, 2023

The Benguet agricultural eco-tourism farm in Bulala, Bayabas, Sablan will soon be handed its Philippine good agricultural practice (PhilGAP) certification to help boost the activities at the facility.

Benguet Provincial Agriculturist Lolita Bentres said her office has been employing good agricultural practices at the provincial government-managed farm since its development in 2011.

With a total of 9.3 hectares, the agri-eco tourism site features a bamboo setum, fruit trees plantation, rice production area, apiary production, and composting facility, along with structures for tourists and guests.

It has an orchard, which was planted with fruit bearing trees such as mango, guyabano, rambutan, malunggay, Palawan cherry, pineapple, coffee, and citrus as well as pine trees, and acacia, which could also act as slope protection.

Bentres said the farm, which is suitable for demo farm productions which are much-needed for agri-tourism,  is frequented by farmers and agri-entrepreneurs for their seminars and to have a farm-to- table experience.

OPAG is now working with the Department of Tourism and local tour operators to develop the farm’s eco-tourism system.

“We are employing GAP and other scientific approaches in taking care of our vegetable products and fruit trees here at the farm, which we also teach to groups of local farmers,” Bentres said.

OPAG focal person for PhilGAP certification, Inocencio Bernard said the agri-eco farm underwent final inspection last May 5.

“The farm has already passed 100 percent during the final inspection. The turnover of the certification was just halted due to the change in administration,” Inocenio said.

Once certified, the farm would join the growing 272 GAP-certified farms in the province. There are additional 86 farms in the province that are waiting for approval from the PhilGAP. 

The Good Agricultural Practice Certification program is being promoted and facilitated by the Regulatory Division of the Department of Agriculture in order to ensure food safety and assure quality of agricultural products while keeping high regard for environmental protection and that of workers health, safety and welfare.

The Bureau of Plant Industry director will sign the authority of all PhilGAP certificates. – Ofelia C. Empian

Related News