Tuesday, June 18, 2019

DA: Low prices of veggie prices normal

BAGUIO. Farmers peel off worn out leaves of cabbages at the Benguet Agri-Pinoy Trading Center (BAPTC). Unsold crops are taken back to their farms due to oversupply and lack of buyers. (Jean Nicole Cortes)

THE PLUNGE in prices for highland vegetables in the Cordillera is considered normal, according to a Department of Agriculture (DA) Official.

This, after farmers were greeted by the low prices of vegetables sold at the La Trinidad Trading Post and Benguet Agri–Pinoy Trading Center in La Trinidad.

“We monitored the prices of vegetables in trading post daily. This first week of January, it declined by 30 percent and that’s normal, because of the high prices and the demand during Christmas and New Year. Right after the holidays, it will really go down,” DA Cordillera Administrative Region regional director Cameron Odsey told SunStar Baguio.

The agriculture official and DA Secretary Emmanuel Piñol stated in an official online post that traders refused to buy the vegetables delivered by the farmers because the floods in Bicol prevented them from shipping the commodities to Bicol and Visayas.

Posted by Emmanuel Pinol on Wednesday, January 9, 2019

“Vegetables do not only go to Manila but also to Visayas. When typhoon Usman hit the country last week of December, no Ro-Ro boats were available during the typhoon which is one factor why there are less buyers,” added Odsey.

Odsey further cited the simultaneous planting of farmers of the same crop which flooded the market as one of the factors that caused low prices of vegetables.

One step he said that the office is looking at is to work with local government units and set up a surveillance system for each municipality that will identify the crops they plant to avoid duplication.

DA and the Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) will also start the validation process to identify the farmers who incurred loss during the previous typhoon following the release of insurance payments.

“As per instructions of DA Secretary, first we are going to validate and identify how many farmers, if they are covered by crop insurance. If they are, they can automatically claim, (and) if they are not covered, we will encourage them to access credit for them to utilize,” Odsey said.

Prices of vegetables at trading post shows cabbage rareball costs P14 to P18, potatoes at P20 to P35, wombok at P3 to P7 and carrots P15 to P22 per kilo.


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