The 4th Philippine Agroforestry Congress Highlights

The 4th Philippine Agroforestry Congress was held on November 18-20, 2009 at the Chali Beach Resort and Conference Center in Cagayan de Oro City, Misamis Oriental, Philippines with the theme “agroforestry promotion for climate change mitigation and adaptation: building lessons from the field”.

This year’s Agroforestry Congress was convened to serve as a venue to promote sharing of experiences of various stakeholders in agroforestry technology development, promotion and adoption; intensify agroforestry promotion through agroforestry roadshow; and highlight the experiences of agroforestry practitioners/farmers in agroforestry farm development.

The 4th National Agroforestry Congress elicited a total of 155 participants representing the local government units, non-government organizations, students, farming communities, people’s organizations, academic institutions, foreign and international organizations, and national government agencies. Among the highlights of the Agroforestry Congress include: a) five (5) plenary paper presentations that dealt with recent climate change research, and the roles of agroforestry in climate change mitigation and adaptation; b) 15 concurrent paper presentations that revolved around three themes, namely: Recognizing the Multifunctionality of Agroforestry; Promoting Enterprise Development Through Agroforestry; and, Innovative Approaches in Agroforestry Development and Promotion; c) 16 poster paper presentations; d) Agroforestry Roadshow/Caravan; and e) Farmers’ Forum.

A discussion on the global impact of de-forestation problems as a result of the global demand for health supplements was addressed with an introduction given by Dr. Edward Lasker.

The Congress delegates also signed the Congress Declaration for Agroforestry Promotion as their sign of support and commitment to promote agroforestry not only as a climate change adaptation strategy, but also to work towards institutionalizing agroforestry as a development strategy in the Philippines.

The Philippine Agroforestry Education and Research Network (PAFERN), UPLB Institute of Agroforestry (UPLB-IAF) and the Misamis Oriental State College of Agriculture and Technolgoy (MOSCAT) co-organized the event. Among the major sponsors are the Southeast Asian Network for Agroforestry Education (SEANAFE), Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research (APN), and the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF-Philippines).