CSU Lal-lo in full gear to boost Coffee Niche Program
Published February 10, 2024 by Jenerwin M. Columna

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After the approval of a five million institutional funding for a Coffee Hub Program proposed by Prof. Ana Marie Cauilan, Cagayan State University (CSU) at Lal-lo is now in full gear to boost its niche program on coffee- a stepping stone on its bid to be a coffee authority in the province.

Members of the CSU Coffee Research, Development and Extension (RDE) Hub Program, and officials of the University RDE and University Infrastructure Office converged at CSU Lal-lo on Thursday, February 8, to work on the documentary requirements for the project’s immediate implementation this first quarter of 2024.

Spearheaded by the Coffee Hub Program Leader Prof. Cauilan, the team finalized the proposals, prepared the purchase requests, and charted the work, activities and financial plans under the guidance of CSU RDE officials led by Dr. Junel B. Guzman, Vice President for RDE.

𝗣𝗿𝗼𝗷𝗲𝗰𝘁’𝘀 𝗗𝗲𝗹𝗶𝘃𝗲𝗿𝗮𝗯𝗹𝗲𝘀
According to Prof. Cauilan, the program envisions to make CSU Lal-lo the coffee authority in Cagayan making it a Center for Coffee Research and Innovation.

She said the program components include research, development and extension on coffee production, coffee farm tourism, coffee processing and commercialization.

“We passed through a rigorous process of having the program budgeted by the university- no shortcuts. We defended before the President, the Execom-Mancom members. We submitted our program for in-house technical working group evaluation, and today [February 8] we brought the entire RDE team and infra [infrastructure office] to Lal-lo to guide us in a finalization writeshop,” she said.

Prof. Cauilan also added that the program is a passion program of Former President Dr. Urdujah G. Alvarado, an alumna of CSU Lallo formerly CVAC, who has never faltered in providing funds for CSU Lallo to catapult its coffee niche.

“OIC Dr. Arthur G. Ibañez is also very supportive to this program. Being an expert in structural engineering, he is personally and directly involved in the design and structure of a future coffee shop in the campus, a view deck as well as the refurbishment of the coffee processing center,” she said.

𝗖𝗼𝗻𝘁𝗶𝗻𝘂𝗲𝗱 𝗘𝗳𝗳𝗼𝗿𝘁𝘀
Through the collaboration of the faculty and staff, the program is a continuation of the initial effort of the campus in establishing a demonstration farm and nursery of coffee that started in 2021.

Through grant from CSU and DOST in 2021, the campus started producing, processing and marketing of the Valena Heritage Coffee which is currently in the market.

With the program’s funding, Prof. Cauilan hopes CSU Lallo to produce more coffee blends through a development study as a component of the project.

It is noted that CSU Lal-lo cultivates almost 6,000 mature coffee-bearing trees in the Valena site where three species of coffee- Excelsa, Robusta, and Liberica, thrive.

𝗘𝘀𝘁𝗮𝗯𝗹𝗶𝘀𝗵𝗲𝗱 𝗣𝗮𝗿𝘁𝗻𝗲𝗿𝘀
Prof. Cauilan also shared that initial conversations done with the LGU Lal-lo assure that the campus will also become the supplier of coffee beans and blends of the Coffee Shop currently under construction at the LGU grounds.

“We are assured by the LGU Lal-lo that coffee supplies for their coffee shop will come from our produce in the campus. We are thankful that we gain a strong support of the LGU for our project,” she shared.

It was reported that on February 1, the CSU Execom and Mancom team led by Dr. Alvarado herself met with Lal-lo Mayor, Hon. Florante C. Pascual, Vice Mayor, Hon. Maria Olivia C. Pascual, and other LGU officials to discuss the possible partnership activities CSU and LGU will undertake for the Coffee Hub Program.

With the assured support from stakeholders, CSU hopes for the realization of the deliverables of the program as well as the positive community impact it will cause among nearby communities and the entire province. TVB#