November 8, 2011

Philippine automotive company seeks soy exports to Japan


Philippine automotive parts maker Yazaki-Torres Manufacturing Inc.,  is eyeing exports of legumes grown in the Philippines--particularly soy-- to Japan, according to the Department of Agriculture (DA).

Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala said the Laguna-based company, which is part of the global network of Japan-based Yazaki Corporation, is keen on exporting organic soy as it is planning to diversify into food production business.

Yazaki Corp. through its affiliate Agritechno Yazaki is currently coordinating with the department for the testing of a new seed technology.

Alcala said the seed-coating trials using the Yazaki technology are ongoing some sites in Mindanao and Bulacan in Luzon.

The DA said that in exchange for the procurement of the seed-coating technology, Yazaki-Torres will import vegetables for the Japanese market.

Alcala said he urged Yazaki-Torres president Feliciano Torres that the Philippines should export semi-processed soy instead of raw soy to allow the farmers to earn more.

Earlier, the Bureau of Agricultural Research (BAR) said officials of Yazaki were especially interested in the soy industry in the Philippines. BAR serves as the lead agency that oversees research and development (R&D) activities on soy.

BAR, an attached agency of the DA, noted that Japan is one of the biggest importers of soy in the world. Japan imported about four million tonnes of soy in 2005.

During a visit in March this year, officials of Yazaki expressed interest in the possibility of a collaborative research with the Philippine government involving the Gel-Covered Seed Technology or Tanemaru, the gel-coated seeds, on soy and for other crops as well.

According to Agritecno Yazaki, Tanemaru is an entirely new seed form in which a small seed is wrapped in natural polymer gel full of water making it easier to handle. Wrapping the seed in the gel will draw the best potential out from the seed itself. This will also prevent the early spoilage and drying of seeds.

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