The Philippines can now export dried pili nuts to European Union’s (EU’s) 27 member states, the Department of Agriculture (DA) announced on Tuesday, March 7.

In a statement, the DA said the issuance of the European Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2023/267, signed on Feb. 8., allows dried pili nuts to be added to the Union’s list of novel foods that may be placed on the EU market after meeting the EU’s food safety and labeling requirements.

photo: Department of Agriculture


The agriculture department welcomed the EU issuance, which opens up new markets for the country’s pili industry.

“The export of pili nut, which is considered a novel food or those that have not been significantly used for human consumption in the EU before May 1997, has been temporarily stopped following new EU rules for novel foods in 2015,” the DA said.

According to the DA, the EU market opening will benefit local pili processors and exporters, as well as thousands of pili farmers, by allowing them to earn more money from higher-value commodities such as pili.

The Philippine Statistics Authority data for 2021 showed that the Bicol Region is the country’s top pili producer, accounting for approximately 90 percent or 1,796.38 hectares of pili production area and 84 percent or 4,932.60 metric tons of total production volume.

The United States of America, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, and Canada are the top export markets for Philippine pili, the agriculture department noted.

The DA said diversifying exports is one strategy being used for the Philippine economy to become more resilient against adverse global shocks.

“Part of the President’s major directives is to strengthen the country’s agricultural value chain so that local farmers will be more competitive as suppliers of export-grade products,” it added.