The coconut is popularly known as the tree of life. The coconut is considered such because of the many uses it can provide, starting from its roots up to its main fruit and still up to its very leaves. This wonder tree is so versatile it can generate different goods which are made available and sold in the market. Its products that are generally commercialized include coconut oil, copra meal, desiccated coconut and copra cake. All the goods that we derive from the coconut are indeed very helpful to our daily lives.
Fortunately the coconut is grown in almost 50 countries and the major coconut producing countries includes Indonesia, India, Malaysia, Ceylon, New Guinea, Mozambique and of course the Philippines, just to name some.(APCC.org, 2003) These countries, according to the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) statistics, are the top producers and exporters of coconut products. However, the FAO noted that the Philippines leads all of these countries in the production and exportation of the coconut. This certainly is good news for the nation and should make all Filipinos proud.
The coconut industry - mainly its production and exportation - has been a big boost in the rise of the Philippine Economy. The coconut, as reported by the Philippine Council for Agricultural Research, is grown in almost 55 provinces of the country and is a major crop in 35 of these provinces. The Census of Agriculture said that this major crop occupies almost 33 percent of the total agricultural land area of the country. Due to the massive production of the coconut, more than 3.4 million coconut farmers have been provided with regular sources of livelihood. The coconut industry has also allowed millions of Filipino families to cope with the present economic hardship through the sale of coconut products to big businesses in the country.
Land Bank of the Philippines CEO Gary B. Teves, in his recent report, clearly stated that indeed coconut production has been a major economic asset to Filipino farmers. He also added that every year these coconut trees produce over 12 billion nuts that directly and indirectly benefit 24 million Filipinos or about one-third of the entire Philippine population. As a result of this, the status of the Philippine economy has gotten a much-needed shot in the arm.
The Philippines' export industry has also received an economic push through the exportation of various coconut-derived products into many other countries around the globe. In the data given by the Philippine Council for Agricultural Research, the Philippines contributes about 75% to the international trade in coconut. The country is producing and exporting the four major coconut products mainly, the copra, coconut oil, desiccated coconut, and copra meal and cake. Consequently this has helped improve our economy because the exportation of coconut brings more cash into the national coffers, making it one of the largest income generating industries in our country. As of today, the Philippines ranks second among the top coconut exporting nations. This surely increases our country's good reputation before the eyes of the other countries that import coconut from us. Being a top exporter of coconut is a big help to our economy because almost all the products that the coconut produces are exported everyday and are used in millions of households the world over. The exportation of these coconut products have boosted the status of the Philippine economy up to 10% as shown in the statistical data of the United Coconut Associations of the Philippines, Inc. Not only does the coconut industry help the Philippine economy through export of its products but it also aids the national economy through coconut-related small-scale businesses we have within the country. Indeed the micro and macro businesses about coconuts that we have inside and outside the country have greatly helped strengthen our sagging economy. Both big and small businesses that produce and sell...
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