PhilFIDA Strengthens Regulatory Functions through Inspection of Licensed Fiber Trading/Processing Establishments in Region VIII

Date Posted 15 January 2024

As part of the mandate of the Philippine Fiber Industry Development Authority (PhilFIDA), specifically in standard implementation and regulation, the Regulatory Division, in collaboration with the Regulatory Unit of PhilFIDA Regional Office VIII, conducted a comprehensive monitoring and site inspection in the provinces of Leyte and Southern Leyte on November 28 to December 01, 2023. The primary objective of this activity was to assess the compliance of twenty-eight (28) licensed traders, processors, and grading & baling establishments with PhilFIDA's policies, rules, and regulations concerning fiber trading and grading baling standards within the region.

Among the 28 establishments inspected, a commendable 78.57% demonstrated full compliance with the policies, rules, and regulations set by PhilFIDA. However, some establishments required attention, with a few flagged as non-compliant, necessitating the replacement or updating of signboards to ensure accurate information, including "no smoking" and "no plastic allowed" signage. Beyond compliance issues, the region faced challenges such as a reduction in abaca supply due to various factors, including the aftermath of Typhoon Odette, the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Abaca Bunchy Top Virus, eradication efforts, and issues related to fiber harvested from abaca seed-derived. Also, licensed processors expressed concerns about the diminishing number of weavers, while some sinamay processors specifically highlighted worries about the market for their products.

In light of these findings, the Regulatory Division has put forth a series of recommendations to PhilFIDA Regional Office VIII. These proposals are geared towards securing the adherence of licensed traders, processors, and grading & baling establishments to PhilFIDA's policies, rules, and regulations, thereby upholding the quality of fibers and ensuring the safety of these establishments. The suggested actions are designed to rectify identified issues and foster strict compliance with the agency’s standards, thereby contributing to the sustainability and growth of the fiber industry in the region.