BAGUIO CITY – The Department of Agriculture (DA) on Thursday said there is sufficient supply of highland vegetables coming from the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) despite the continuous rains due to the enhanced southwest monsoon (habagat).
Dr. Cameron Odsey, DA-CAR regional director, said the volume of vegetables being traded out of the region is the same as that traded before the southwest monsoon, and transported to markets in different parts of the country.
He said about two million kilograms of assorted vegetables mostly composed of the “chopsuey” are traded at the public and private trading facilities in Benguet and transported out daily despite the non-stop rains here and Benguet province.
He said Cordillera produces 85 percent of the country’s highland vegetable requirement with 65 percent coming from Benguet.
While there were continuous rains in Baguio and Benguet province, he said the region continues to produce the vegetable needs of the Filipinos.
“Most of the vegetables survived except iyong natabunan (buried) on landslides, maliit na quantity lang yun (it’s a small quantity),” he said.
The Cordillera Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (CDRRMC) reported that it has recorded PHP35,260 losses to livestock, and PHP2.03 million to high-value crops.
The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) also reported that it has listed PHP50 million worth of infrastructure damage.
Odsey said while there were landslides that occurred on roads, the vegetable truckers were able to continue transporting the produce to the trading posts and markets.
“Nag-o-open naman ang mga roads maski nag-landslide, at least may one-lane road na nakakalusot naman, hindi naman totally blocked (roads are being opened. Even if there are landslides, the roads remain passable one lane allowing vehicles to pass and not blocked),” he said.
He said there are no damages to corn and rice plantations in the region, assuring the DA is ready to help farmers in case of damaged crops.
“We have standby seeds for rice and vegetables and can provide for them so that they will have ready planting materials,” he said.
He said they continue to encourage the farmers, especially those being assisted by the DA, to register with the Philippine Crops Insurance Corporation.
Odsey said commercial farms can also register for crop insurance. (PNA)