As a contribution to sustaining the coffee industry amidst the pandemic, Cavite State University through the National Coffee Research, Development and Extension Center (NCRDEC) hosted the recently concluded 2nd Southeast Asian Coffee Education Comgress (SEACEC) which kickstarted through a virtual opening program held on 13 December 2022 via Cisco Webex Meetings.
With the theme, “Revitalizing the Coffee Industry in Southeast Asia Amidst the Pandemic”, the event aims to gather all the coffee stakeholders and value chain actors in the Southeast Asian Region to present various initiatives which contribute to the sustainability of the coffee industry amidst the pandemic.
CvSU President, Dr. Hernando D. Robles, delivered the opening message and introduced the event’s guest of honor, Department of Agriculture (DA) Undersecretary Domingo Panganiban, representing His Excellency Ferdinand Marcos Jr. Usec. Panganiban highlighted the role of partnership and collaboration in uplifting the coffee industry.
On the other hand, Dr. Gerald Glenn F. Panganiban, Officer-In-Charge (OIC)-Director of the Bureau of Plant Industry, also delivered the keynote message during the opening program which was followed by messages of support from the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Usec. Dr. Renato Solidum with OIC-Regional Director of the DTI-CAR National Industry Cluster Coordinator for Coffee, Juliet P. Lucas.
Dr. Melbourne R. Talactac, VP for Research and Extension, provided a synopsis of the 1st SEASEC held on 1-4 October 2018 in Tagaytay City while NCRDEC Director Gerry M. Castillo gave an overview and enumerated the line-up of activities of this year’s event.
To wrap up the opening program, a ceremonial coffee toast was executed in celebration of the unwavering commitment to striving harder and accelerating the growth of the coffee industry while edifying academe- community- industry linkages and being a champion in the global market.
Plenary sessions ensued the opening program wherein the role of research, innovation, and technology transfer in Coffee industry development: the World Coffee Research experience was the initial topic tackled by WCR Chief Executive, Dr. Jennifer Vern Long while the Head of Business Operations of the Indonesian Coffee and Cocoa Research Institute, Dr. Ucu Sumirat, talked about the Science and Technology- based Coffee Production in Indonesia during the second plenary session leaving a statement that “GAP or good agricultural practices should be the new normal.”
For the third plenary talk, Mr. Terence J. Ryan, Project Director of ACDI/ VOCA PhilCAFE, discussed the organization’s initiatives for the Philippine Coffee Industry Development such as coffee projects in partnership with different institutions in the country like CvSU followed by Dr. David Santos, Chairperson of the National Banner Program on Coffee and Cacao Philippine Council for Agriculture and Fisheries, who provided an outlook on the Philippine coffee industry through the Philippine Coffee Industry Roadmap 2021-2025 in the fourth plenary session.
The fifth speaker, Dr. Phan Viet Ha, Vice Director of the Western Highlands Agriculture and Forestry Science Institute, discussed Vietnam’s Coffee Research and Development during the Time of Pandemic while Dr. Christophe Montagnon, a Coffee Geneticist and Chief Executive Officer of RD2 Vision Montpellier from France explained in the last plenary session the role of genetics and varieties on the cup quality of coffee and presented his research-based evidence regarding the relationship of coffee quality to the altitude of coffee plants/ trees.