In an effort to help lift agriculture exports and support economic recovery, the Department of Agriculture has ordered the Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI) and its laboratories to waive the fees for the pesticide residue analysis (PRA) tests for fruits and vegetable exports.
The move was lauded by the multi-sectoral Export Development Council (EDC) and business groups Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI), Philippine Exporters Confederation Inc. (Philexport) and Philippine Food Exporters (Philfoodex) which earlier petitioned for the removal of the fees, saying these affect the competitiveness of food exporters.
DA Order 11 series of 2021 waives the PRA fees for fresh and primary processed (frozen, dried, pureed) fruits and vegetables that are intended for export by accredited exporters and farmers.
PCCI president Benedicto Yujuico said the recent move would benefit around 150,000 farmers or growers nationwide, including more than 1,000 small and medium processors and exporters engaged in production and processing. “This is certainly a big boost to the agri-food and export industry especially at this time when businesses have yet to recover from the negative impact of COVID-19 pandemic,” he told philstar.com.