Banana growers find new markets in Middle East-A A +A
Friday, July 6, 2012
BANANA growers in Mindanao can now heave a sigh of relief after they found alternative export markets for cavendish bananas in the Middle East and Europe.
The Mindanao Banana Farmers and Exporters Association (MBFEA) said it will start shipping banananas soon to new markets like Egypt and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
MBFEA president Ireneo Dalayon, in an interview with Sun.Star Davao over the phone Friday, said they will also export bananas to Ukraine and Moscow, Russia.
"We have not yet shipped but we have contacts," said Dalayon, also chief executive officer of the Federation of Davao Cooperatives (Fedco).
Dalayon said that as of now, they are in the process of evaluating how much is the demand of these countries for cavendish bananas.
"But, most probably we will start shipping this year," he said.
Dalayon said Philippine banana exporters will initially ship 100 vans of cavendish bananas to Dubai, most probably in September this year.
"Two weeks ago we went to Dubai for negotiation," he said.
Getting new markets for their products is one positive development for the banana growers, who earlier suffered and lost millions of pesos when China imposed stringent sanitary measures on the cavendish bananas from the Philippines last month.
Because of the strict measures, Philippine bananas were either shipped back or left to rot in several Chinese ports back then.
Now, Dalayon said banana exporters from Mindanao have started to ship cavendish bananas to China around 10 to 20 percent only.
Meanwhile, Dalayon said Fedco distributed on Friday around 400 boxes of cavendish bananas to SIR Elementary School and Cesario Villa-Abrille Elementary School. Each box weighs 13.5 kilos.
Of the 400 boxes, 160 boxes were given to SIR Elementary School and 240 boxes to Cesario Villa Abrille Elementary School.
These schools have been identified by the Department of Education to have the most number of poorest school children in Davao City.
The Department of Trade and Industry in Davao Region earlier ordered to strengthen the local market for cavendish bananas to help small banana growers earn with or without the China market.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on July 07, 2012.