February 9, 2023

Potato growers in Benguet and nearby areas can now avail of clean and quality seed potato planting materials.

The Benguet State University-Northern Philippine Root Crops Research and Training Center (BSU-NPRCRTC) received on Nov. 11 its certificate of accreditation as potato seed producer from the National Seed Quality Control Services of the Bureau of Plant Industry after complying with the findings and recommendations of the evaluation team from BPI.

Dr. Juliet Ochasan of BPI-Cordillera said that clients are now assured of locally produced quality potato planting materials as BSU-NPRCRTC went through the evaluation process and is compliant of the standards set by government on potato seed production.

She said BSU is the first institution to be accredited in the Cordillera.

NPRCRTC Director Cynthia Kiswa said that the center applied for an accreditation 10 years ago but was denied because BSU is an academic institution, but the center has been continuously producing disease-free potato planting materials through its tissue culture laboratory.

BSU-NPRCRTC is producing 30 varieties of potatoes and is supplying more than 150,000 potato seedlings to its clients annually. 

Kiswa said center reapplied for accreditation not only to ensure continuous production of quality potato planting materials, but also to encourage potato seed growers to undergo accreditation.

Leonardo Liwan Antonio, a potato grower from Bakun is the only accredited potato seed producer in the province. – Alma Santiago