Potential for Jobs Generation of the Rice Value Chain in Mindanao, Southern Philippines
Rice is an important crop not only because it is a staple in the Philippines but also because it plays an important role in Mindanao by providing employment, with value of annual wages of more than PhP 42 billion, and food security for landless and poor farmers, particularly in regions and provinces where poverty incidences and prevalence of conflict are high. This study aims to examine the jobs generation potential of rice value chain in Mindanao. A value chain framework was used to analyze the issues and the job creation potential of the chain using the case of M’lang, North Cotabato. Key informant interviews, focus group discussions, and rice farmer surveys were done in Mindanao. Total jobs generated in the rice value chain for North Cotabato is estimated at 23,011 jobs from a total area of 125,731 ha, and 221,796 jobs for Mindanao from a total area of 1,189,266 ha in 2014. Access to better seeds, sufficiency of irrigation, access to credit, and high labor cost are issues that affect the performance of the rice value chain from production to marketing. By addressing the issues and implementing these strategies, it is estimated that additional jobs of 36,672 will be generated.