Agriculture Secretary William Dar announced the plan of the Department of Agriculture (DA) to establish a National Seed Technology Park during his keynote speech at the 2019 National Seed Summit on December 2, 2019.

In line with the summit’s theme, “Binhing de Kalidad at Sagana, Para sa Mataas na Ani at Kita,” the Secretary stressed that available and accessible good quality and certified seeds are important in increasing the country’s agricultural production.

“Yes, we have been doing research all these years. However, if we compare our total factor productivity with other ASEAN countries, we are there at the middle. Ibig sabihin po, karamihan sa appropriate or relevant outputs of research natin ay hindi pa rin nakakarating sa kanayunan,” Secretary Dar said.

According to him, the National Seed Technology Park will gather the key players in the seed industry in an area of at least 50 hectares.

“We will invite all the key players in the seed industry, be it private, multinational, or local. This will be in one area, maybe a national center in Luzon with branches in Visayas and Mindanao,” Dar said.

“They can set up not only research there, but even facilities for drying, processing, and packaging. Complete value chain, that’s the whole idea,” he added.

The project will be supported by the Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI), National Seed Industry Council (NSIC), and the Philippine Seed Industry Association, Inc., among others.

Inspired by the Andhra Pradesh State Mega Seed Park in India, Dar considers the seed technology park to be a business proposition or an inclusive agribusiness opportunity that is not limited to research or educational purposes only.

With ongoing talks with potential partners, the secretary said that he will set aside some P200 million in funds to kickstart the project next year.

The establishment of a national seed technology park is part of the DA’s initiative to develop the agriculture sector, particularly the crops sub-sector.