Testimonies from Polillo, Quezon

As a representative of the Cacao Growers Association, Vilma Gimao is one of the farmer cooperators partnered under the project “Community-Based Participatory Action Research (CPAR) on Cacao + Pinakbet Vegetables under Coconut-Based Farming Systems in Polillo, Quezon” that provided the farmers with interventions on the application of vermicompost fertilizers and grafted cacao.

Planting and production of cacao became widespread as the number of adopters in their area also increased. Almost 10,000 seedlings of cacao were ordered every month from the farmers. With the goal of increasing crop productivity and income of farmers thru intercropping coconuts with cacao and pinakbet vegetables, the said CPAR project contributed in the improvement of their town’s cacao production and vegetable selling which then resulted in an increase in their income.

All of these were initiated thru CPAR, one of the DA-BAR's banner programs that aims to empower farming and fishing communities through mature and relevant technologies. Utilizing the community-based approach, CPAR is geared toward verifying the technical and economic feasibility of technologies in specific locations and at the farmers’ level to scale out for widespread adoption.