The Cordillera is a landlocked region, conducive to coffee production in some 7,700 hectares of suitable climate in mountainous and rolling terrains.
The importance of coffee as an industrial crop is being championed in a region that is dubbed as the watershed of Northern Luzon, the main source of irrigation and hydropower. All four major varieties of coffee: Arabica, Robusta, Liberica, and Excelsa grow well in the region.
Arabica is grown mostly in the highlands of Benguet, Mountain Province, and Ifugao. Robusta is grown in the lowland areas particularly in Kalinga, Ifugao, and Eastern Mountain Province. Coffee was selected as the priority commodity to be piloted by the Philippine Rural Development Project (PRDP) in the Cordillera due to its high market potential, suitability to all areas in the region, and a potential for value addition.
The industry can directly benefit its multi-sector stakeholders. At present, the production area in hectares for Arabica in the region’s six provinces, are as follows: Abra, 21 hectares; Apayao, 50; Benguet, 236; Ifugao, 50; Kalinga, 183; and Mountain Province, 77. The total production area for Robusta in each of the six provinces of the region are Abra, 5 hectares; Apayao, 40; Benguet, 64; Ifugao, 2,463; Kalinga, 7,449; and Mt. Province, 191. Smallholder farmers in Baguio City can be trained to produce seedlings to be sold to farmers outside of the City.