Oversupply of veggies cause huge price plunge-A A +A
Sunday, January 6, 2013
LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – Peak sales of veggies in December has left a glut now.
Benguet Farmers Marketing Cooperative (BFMC) Executive Manager Augusta Balanoy said due to an oversupply of vegetables in December, generally, the prices have gone down.
Balanoy said some commodities’ prices increased.
“The planned and implemented traffic scheme also helped in the easy in queuing [for] the vegetables so that although relatively low, the vegetables were able to move [quickly],” Balanoy added.
However, the oversupply and the plunge in prices in produce pushed farmers into thinking about the upcoming Asian Free Trade Agreement to be implemented in 2015.
“Because of this experience, the farmers are now questioning the wisdom behind the AFTA and other free trade agreements that allows the legal entry of imported fresh vegetables,” Balanoy said.
She said that “with the scenario of the vegetable industry in December and now, it is obvious that Benguet can very well provide for the country’s needs of temperate vegetables. Now they fear that with the oversupply scenario of local vegetables, plus the volume of vegetables from 15 countries in the free trade agreements, farmers will have a bleak future.”
The incident has also made farmers see the importance of preparing for the AFTA’s full implementation.
Balanoy added that the use of the Wangal grounds as staging area for vegetables temporarily provided a certain control of vegetable flow, which relatively caused the increase of prices.
“Farmers and vegetable stakeholders expressed their gratitude to the implementation of such orderly traffic scheme,” she added.
The longest number of hours of farmers’ stay at the staging area was monitored to take 20 hours, owing to a decreased number of buyers.
In 2011 farmers were reported to stay at the staging area for two-three days.
Balanoy said vegetable volume is still high and prices are still low because of overproduction.
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on January 07, 2013.