The Department of Agriculture-Bureau of Soils and Water Management (DA-BSWM) Laboratory Services Division (LSD), the National Reference Laboratory in the country of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) for soil analysis, hosted the first Semi-Annual Meeting of the Philippines National Soil Laboratory Network (Phil NASOLAN) on May 6-7, 2024. Phil NASOLAN, with 48 member soil laboratories, plays a crucial role in the standardization and quality control of soil testing, as well as the capacity building and upgrading of Soil Laboratories and their personnel. The two-day event is an important platform for its members to share best practices and discuss key issues.

The meeting’s success would not be possible without the continuous support of the Department of Agriculture, represented by the Assistant Secretary for Logistics Mr. Daniel Alfonso Atayde; and the BSWM Director and PhilNASOLAN Chair Dr. Gina P. Nilo. In addition, the active participation of the 183 Phil NASOLAN members, both onsite and online, was a significant contribution to the success of the meeting, highlighting the importance of their roles in our collective mission.

One of the highlights of the event is the Launching of the Fertilizer Recommendation Mobile App, a cutting-edge application technology developed in-house. This app is not only a tool, but also a solution designed to streamline fertilizer management, reduce errors, and promote responsible use of inorganic fertilizers. Its ultimate goal is to empower farmers and stakeholders, fostering sustainable practices and leading to bountiful harvests. The BSWM is optimistic about the positive impact this app will have on our agricultural practices. For more information about the app, please visit

In addition, we are proud to announce the reelection of Co-Chairs, Mr. Elly Paul A. Tomas for DA-Regional/Satellite Soils Laboratory (DARSL/SATSL), and Maria Carmela Q. Capule, Ph.D.   for Private/International Soil Laboratories (PL/INTSL). Mr. Tomas, with his extensive experience in soil analysis and leadership as Chief of Regional Soils Laboratory XII, and Dr. Capule, whose expertise in quality assurance procedures, have been instrumental in the progress of the Phil NASOLAN.

The Network also wishes to extend its sincere gratitude for the hard work and dedication of Mel Chrisel Sales, Ph.D. in serving the State Universities and Colleges category of the Network;  while also being excited for the election of Dr. Karen S. Bautista, Chief of the Soil and Water Resources Research Division of the BSWM, as the newly elected Co-Chair for the State Universities and Colleges/Research Soil Laboratories (SUC/RESSL), bringing fresh perspectives and ideas to the table.  Similarly, the Network would like to welcome Mr. Raphael Henri B. Mundo from the Sugar Regulatory Administration for his election as the Co-chair for the National and Provincial Soil Laboratories. Their new terms will be effective in November 2024, at the 5th General Assembly of the Phil NASOLAN.

The oath taking was followed by a highly successful turnover ceremony of 16 ICT equipment (high-end desktop computers) to the DA-Regional Soil Laboratories as part of the development of the National Soil Test Databanking System and the Laboratory Information Management System at the RSLs. The provision of these valuable resources has empowered the laboratories to enhance their research and testing efforts, which will ultimately benefit the community at large.

This Semi-Annual PhilNASOLAN Meeting was a testament to the dedication and expertise of all the participants. The BSWM is grateful for their active engagement and insightful contributions to the discussions on the implementation of the Guidelines on the Issuance of License to Operate – Soil Laboratory (LTO-SL) also known as DA MC No.33 S.2020.

During the meeting, the following topics were covered: the Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA), Draft Revisions of the Guidelines, the 2024 Capacity Building Program of the Phil NASOLAN, a Committee Meeting where respective laboratory categories discussed matters relevant to the Network and the implementation of PD1435 and the National Soil Health Program, Presentation of the BSWM-approved test methods for Soil Chemistry, and the momentous launching of 2024 Phil NASOLAN Proficiency Testing Scheme. These discussions were aimed at improving the implementation process and fostering collaboration among the Network members.

The Phil NASOLAN is currently composed of 19 DA-Regional and Satellite Soil Laboratories, 10 National and Provincial Soil Laboratories, 11 State Universities, Colleges, and Research Soil Laboratories, and 8 Private Soil Laboratories.

The BSWM invites all soil laboratories in the country to join and contribute to its mission. To become a member, you may reach us at

(Laboratory Services Division)

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