TANDAG CITY, Surigao del Sur, Apr. 20 (PIA) - A total of 851 coffee growers who are members of the six assisted Agrarian Reform Beneficiary (ARB) cooperatives of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) within Barobo and Tagbina towns Agrarian Reform Community (ARC) cluster will be the first batch recipients of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) Convergence on Value Chain Enhancement for Growth and Empowerment (ConVERGE) project.

DAR Surigao del Sur information officer Myra Yu said that the Project ConVERGE is a rural development approach that aims to increase the farmers’ income and productivity that will focus on coffee production, rejuvenation, processing and marketing activities. 

The said project is financed by IFAD, a specialized agency of the United Nations that helps reduce poverty incidence in the developing countries.

The cooperative beneficiaries according to DAR are: Mabuhay Kahayagan Coffee Growers Cooperative (MKCGC); Tagbina ARB Multi-Purpose Cooperative (TAGAREBE); Ugoban Multi-Purpose Cooperative (UMPC); Tagbina Rural Improvement Club Producers Cooperative (TAGRICCO); Progressive ARB Cooperatives (PARBMCO); and San Roque Cooperative (SARCO).

Yu further said that MKCGC, the producer of Robusta Ground Coffee (brewed coffee), which is available in the market, is the lead cooperative in the implementation. Other coops involved are engaged in coffee production and rejuvenation stage.

Provincial Agrarian Reform program officer Benjamin M. Mataksil during the project consultation meeting said that "as the project progresses, hopefully it will benefit more or less 6,613 agrarian reform beneficiaries in the two municipalities involved”.

The said project started the implementation last quarter of 2016 and will run until year 2021. (PIA-Surigao del Sur)