February 02, 2024 || via Zoom

Representing the Genetic Resources and Improvement Division, Mr. Jess Bryan M. Alvariño and Ms. Honey Fe G. Boje, along with Ms. Ma. Nita G. Roldan from the Crop Management Division, presented three groundbreaking project proposals via Zoom on February 2, 2024. These research proposals, aimed at revolutionizing rubber cultivation and management, were showcased before a distinguished panel of technical committee reviewers.

The projects presented to the reviewers bear the following titles: (1) Rubber Germplasm Conservation, Characterization, and Utilization, (2) Disease and Insect Pest Management on Rubber Project, and (3) Institutional Enhancement for Biotechnology under the program, “Enhancing and Sustaining Philippine Rubber Productivity Through Biotechnology and Effective Pest Management.” The objective of this review is to expedite the approval and appraisal process of the commodity program proposal submitted to DA-CBC.

The esteemed technical committee reviewers included Dr. Ma. Anita M. Bautista from UP-Diliman, Dr. Ma. Genaleen Q. Diaz from UP-Los Baños, and Dr. Arlen Dela Cruz from the Department of Agriculture – Crop Biotechnology Center (DA-CBC). Also in attendance during the comprehensive review were Mr. Karl Vincent Jose from the DA-Biotechnology Program Office, his colleagues, and some project staff from the Philippine Rubber Research Institute (PRRI).

In his enlightening introduction, Dr. Roel R. Suralta stressed the importance of initiating the projects with a solid foundation, emphasizing the necessity to commence and execute them correctly from the outset. This resonating call to action set the tone for the meticulous scrutiny that the three projects underwent from the esteemed technical committee reviewers.

Drawing upon their rich expertise from academia and research institutions, Dr. Bautista, Dr. Diaz, and Dr. Dela Cruz played a pivotal role in thoroughly examining the proposed projects. Their valuable insights, recommendations, and suggestions have been instrumental in refining and optimizing the projects, ensuring a strategic and effective approach towards advancing the initiatives.

The comprehensive review of the three rubber biotechnology projects marked crucial milestones in the endeavor to improve and maintain the productivity of the Philippine rubber industry. The collaborative efforts of the key stakeholders promise to shape a more sustainable future for the Philippine rubber industry through cutting-edge biotechnological interventions.

– Julius Biolango