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On February 1, 2024, the Sugar Industry Foundation, Inc. (SIFI) Regenerative Agriculture & Climate Mitigation (RAC) Program hosted a learning visit by Japanese companies interested in sustainable agriculture.

Mr. Kazuhiko Kunita, Senior Manager of Sustainability Development Department, and Ms. Amminami Ikuta came to represent Ajinomoto Co. and Mr. Kazuya Suzuki from Suntory. Meanwhile, PwC Sustainability LLC was represented by Ms. Yuki Isogai, Lead Partner; Ms. Namiko Ichiki, Senior Manager, and Ms. Ayaka Yamagishi. They were introduced to the Nestlé Proforest-RAC Program and operations in Negros Occidental. The main objective of the learning visit was for the representatives to observe on the ground farming methods of regenerative agriculture, identify difficulties and challenges, and elevate positive agricultural and environmental results of regenerative agriculture.

The one-day visit included an orientation on SIFI and the RAC Program. The session created a productive discourse, with the visitors raising questions on topics like the green manure demo farms, soil analysis baseline and sampling, and the preliminary harvest results of the minimum tillage demo farms.

A situationer and key figures regarding the sugar industry structure and performance in the recent years were also provided by Mr. Joey Ledesma, SIFI Treasurer. The team also paid a field visit to 2 RAC Program partner-planters (Cooper Reata Agricultural Corp. and Cadiz Agro Inc.) in Cadiz City to interact with farm owners and members.

With RAC’s recent developments gaining attention from the international scene, the SIFI RAC expects to scale up their implementation in the coming crop year.

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