The Land Bank of the Philippines assured stakeholders in the coconut industry it has available credit facilities designed to help improve their operations and income.
Cecilia Borromeo, Landbank president and chief executive officer, said under the Coconut Production and Processing Financing (Coco-Financing) program, credit assistance can be extended to coconut farmers and other industry stakeholders engaged in the production and processing of coconut-based products.
“We fully agree that a coconut-based farming system will increase productivity and farmers’ income and promote value-adding operation. We also support promoting the adoption of coconut-coffee intercrop. Aside from the technical requirement for shade to young coffee plants, this production model will lead to increased land productivity and farmers’ income,” Borromeo said.
The Coco-Financing Program is open to individual small farm holders, small and medium enterprises, cooperatives and farmers’ association, large agribusiness enterprises or corporations, local government units, non-government organizations and countryside financial institutions.
Eligible borrowers may apply for a loan with an affordable interest based on prevailing market benchmark rate.
For smallholder farmer, interest rate of 5 percent per annum to fund coconut and coffee production, including new plantation, replanting, rejuvenation and rehabilitation; establishment of nursery gardens; post-harvest activities such as fermentation, drying, roasting, grinding/packaging and storage; processing/milling; and manufacturing and trading.
Poduction loans are payable based on crop cycle or gestation and payback period of the project.
Apart from coconut, Land Bank explained that loans are also available for the practice of growing other high-value crops such as coffee, cacao, bananas, papaya, pineapple, abaca, rubber and vegetables via intercropping.