La Trinidad remains uncertain over Agri-Pinoy facility

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Tuesday, July 29, 2014


LA TRINIDAD, Benguet -- Mayor Edna Tabanda expressed her confusion with the management and overall set up of the Agri Pinoy in the Valley.

As a stakeholder of the project, the Valley has pledged P30 million for the project but up to know, La Trinidad has yet to award the money.

"We do not even know how we will give the pledge, if it is in cash or in kind, they have not talked to us," Tabanda said.

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Tabanda added the municipality has been trying to coordinate with the Department of Agriculture for details of the project but to this day, there has been no communication with the local government.

The Lady chief executive eyes the eventual closure of the kilometer 5 trading post as the Agri-Pinoy Center rises but with plans for the center still not clear, nothing can be made final.

"We are in limbo," Tabanda said.

Ideally, Tabanda said the trading post will eventually no longer be used as a vegetable trading depository once the 4-hectare Department of Agriculture lot at the Strawberry Fields is completed.

The current trading post area will be converted into a business enterprise for the municipality and will likely become a showcase of products, services and crafts of the Valley.

The Agri-Pinoy Center is a P400-million modern wholesale trading and processing facility for vegetables and fruit, which is part of the country’s integrated food supply chain being established in major food producing regions in the country.

It is envisioned to make trading operations of vegetables and fruits faster, from unloading until payment of goods delivered, and thus minimize spoilage and wastage.

It will be funded jointly by the DA, provincial and municipal governments of Benguet and La Trinidad, and Representative Ronnie Cosalan.

Tabanda said the old agreement was made during the time of former mayor Greg Abalos and the municipality would like to review the contract to see if everything is in place.

"We are apprehensive, because until now no one is coming to us to talk about it," the mayor said.

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on July 30, 2014.

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