DOLE Philippines, the world's largest grower of fresh fruits and vegetables, is eyeing to establish a banana plantation in Gingoog City, according to City Mayor Marie de Lara Guingona.
If realized, this would improve the economic status of the local farmers and landowners in Gingoog, Guingona said.
She said representatives of the company recently made a presentation on their proposed expansion at the Office of the City Mayor.
"Having series of full-swing implementation of our farm-to-market roads, Dole Philippines' expansion for its banana plantations is very timely in the sense that their deliveries of both pre-planting inputs and post-harvest facilities will easily be loaded because we are now concreting our serviceable roads in various rural barangays," Guingona said.
Dole Philippines representative Renato Panamugan, in his presentation, said the company is conducting exploratory observation and topographical surveys in Barangays Lunotan, Kalagonoy, Malibud, Kipuntos, Dinawehan, and Kianlagan.
They are looking for 500 to 900 meters above sea level elevation for high land variety which will "surely yield sweeter and good quality produce," Panamugan said.
"After this preparatory finding, there will be sets of business consultation with landowners for possible land rentals for a minimum of 15 years provided that these parcels of land are well documented and conflict-free. In this manner, the go-signal for banana plantation will sprout in this ‘agricultural city’ in which all necessary farm inputs and facilities will be provided by our company," he added.
Vice Mayor Ruthie Guingona, for her part, expressed gratitude for and acknowledgement of this new agricultural development.
Likewise, City Councilor Thaddeus Lugod, the committee chairman on agriculture, said he is looking forward to the project that is seen to benefit the farmers and create a domino effect across the banana industry.
"Palpably, Dole’s advent to this component city manifests that this administration is maintaining a peaceful and business-friendly atmosphere which inevitably entices interested entrepreneurs to pour investments in our beloved Gingoog," Lugod said.