WCR Selects Recipients of PhilCAFE Research Grants

Six grantees have been selected to undertake projects on topics critical to furthering coffee research in the Philippines on behalf of PhilCAFE

World Coffee Research (WCR) is proud to announce the winners of six research grants. These grants are awarded on behalf of the Philippine Coffee Advancement and Farm Enterprise (PhilCAFE) project, which is funded by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)* and implemented by ACDI/VOCA and its partners, including WCR. These grants will provide funding to support researchers at local state universities and colleges to undertake projects on topics they see as critical to furthering coffee research and development (R&D) in the Philippines. WCR and ACDI/VOCA put out a call for proposals in 2021 and have selected the following proposals to receive grants for their projects:

  • Dr. Tamie C. Solpot, University of Southern Mindanao, Faculty Researcher: “Enhancing Productivity of Robusta Coffee through Organic-Based Fertilization for Increased Profitability”
  • Dr. Miriam Baltazar, Cavite State University, Faculty Researcher: “Genetic Differentiation of Coffea liberica Using SSR Marker Analysis"
  • Bernadith T. Borja and Neil Pep Dave N. Sumaya, University of Southern Mindanao, Faculty Researchers: “Disease Profiling and Development of Weather-based Models in Forecasting Coffee Disease Epidemics”
  • Charity Oria, Sultan Kudarat State University, Ph.D. Candidate: “Smart Control System for Optimal Drying Condition of Coffee Beans and Corn in an Inflatable Solar Dryer with Integrated Solar Air Heater”
  • Christian Joseph S. Baluyot, Cavite State University, MS Candidate: “Challenges of Farmers Beyond the Philippine Coffee Industry Roadmap 2017-2022: Basis for Government Policies and Industry Programs”
  • Marjorie Ann B. Panerio, University of the Philippines Los Baños, MS Candidate: “Investigating the Rooting Efficiency of Hard-to-Root Liberica Coffee (Coffea liberica)”

During their grant period, all recipients will produce theses, dissertations, or research products that can be introduced to the Philippine coffee research community. It is projected that these products will be presented during the Philippine Coffee Quality Competition or Philippine Coffee Congress, both of which will take place in 2024. These activities support PhilCAFE’s overall objective to aid in the growth of the country’s coffee industry.

PhilCAFE primarily focuses on increasing coffee production and productivity in the Philippines, strengthening national research capacity within industry institutions, organizations, and universities, and expanding access to domestic and international markets for Philippine-produced coffee. PhilCAFE goals are closely aligned to WCR’s mission to help grow, protect, and enhance supplies of quality coffee while improving the livelihoods of the families who produce it.

As a partner in the project, WCR facilitates trails, hosts certification programs, and brings international consultants and experts, such as industry partners and researchers from affiliated universities, to PhilCAFE.

For instance, WCR established 19 on-farm technology trials (OFTTs) in the Philippines—10 in Mindanao in 2020 and 9 in Luzon in 2021—to assess the growth performance of several arabica coffee cultivars in response to inorganic and compost fertilizer, with the goal of identifying suitable varieties for particular growing areas. A final OFTT will be established in Visayas in December 2022.

Additionally, through the PhilCAFE Variety Trial, WCR has initiated trials to test a number of international varieties in different environments throughout the country. Partners can analyze variety performance for potential variety registration and to understand the interaction between different genetic materials and the environment.

You can read more about the PhilCAFE project, including its objectives, activities, approaches, and anticipated results, on the ACDI/VOCA website.

Note: The content of these research products or publications do not necessarily reflect the views, analysis or policies of WCR, ACDI/VOCA or USDA, nor does any mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by WCR or ACDI/VOCA or USDA.

*Under Cooperative Agreement/Grant No. FCC-492-2018/001/00.