QUEZON CITY, Feb. 2 (PIA) -- To further boost the growing local cocosugar industry and meet the increasing domestic and global demand for cocosugar, the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) and the Department of Agriculture are pushing for the standardization of the cocosugar industry in the country.

PCA Administrator Euclides G. Forbes announced Thursday that the 1st National Coconut Sap Sugar Congress will be held on March 5-6, 2012 at the Marco Polo Hotel in Davao City.

Forbes said that internationally accepted standards in the production of cocosugar will be discussed in the conference to attended by industry stakeholders.

Though priced higher than regular sugar, there is demand for cocosugar in the US, Japan, Middle East and Europej. Forbes said that the country eports a total of 70 tons per month, based on data provided by stakeholders. Locally, the farm gate price is P200 per kilo and the retail price ranges from P600 to P1000 per kilo.

He also said that cocosugar has low glycemic index, which makes it a better alternative for diabetics and the elderly, compared to other types of sugar available in the market.

Forbes said that foreign investors have already expressed interest in investing in the country’s cocosugar industry.

PCA and DA will also establish a certification system to safeguard the cocosugar industry in order to prevent a repeat of the "nata de coco experience" where product quality in the market deteriorated; eventually, the patent was acquired by a Japanese firm.

Forbes was the guest at the program Talking points aired over PTV and Radyo ng Bayan nationwide, and sponsored by the Presidential Communications Operations Office and the Philippine Information Agency.

source: pia

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