The EU market opening will benefit local pili processors and exporters including thousands of pili farmers
Dried pili nuts from the Philippines can now enter the European Union (EU) following the issuance of the European Commission Implementing Regulation (EU).
The document signed authorises the inclusion of dried pili nuts in the Union’s list of novel foods that may be placed on the EU market after it passed the EU’s food safety and labelling requirements.
In line with the directive of Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. President to boost high-value crops for export, the Department of Agriculture (DA) welcomed the EU issuance that opens market opportunities for the country’s pili industry.
The export of pili nut, which is considered a novel food or those that have not been significantly used for human consumption in the EU before May 1997, has been temporarily stopped following new EU rules for novel foods in 2015.
The EU market opening will benefit local pili processors and exporters including thousands of pili farmers as this opportunity enables them to gain more income from higher-value commodities such as pili.
The Bicol Region is the country’s top pili producer with about 90 per cent or 1,796.38 hectares of pili production area and 84 per cent or 4,932.60 metric tons of the total volume of production based on the Philippine Statistics Authority data in 2021.
The DA’s Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI), High-Value Crops Development Program (HVCDP), Agribusiness Marketing Assistance Service (AMAS), Philippine Rural Development Project (PRDP), and the Bicol Regional Field Office are actively involved in the pili industry development.
The DA agencies provide inputs, establish facilities for production, post-harvest, processing and marketing, and conduct research for development and capacity-building activities including the adoption of good agricultural practices and food safety standards, among others.
The major export markets for Philippine pili include the United States of America, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, and Canada.
Diversifying exports is one strategy being utilised for the Philippine economy to become more resilient against adverse global shocks.