CITY Agriculture Officer Leonardo Avila III has considered espousing on powdered malunggay leaves to become every Dabawenyo household's food additive to help improve nutrition in the city.

Avila raised this proposition of embarking into powdered malunggay project during the recently held planning conference of the City Nutrition Committee members comprising of various offices from the local government unit, national government agencies and some private sectors.

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The former city councilor stressed on the enormous nutritional benefits of malunggay leaves or the moringa leaves known to be medicinal miracle plant.

"Sometimes, what we already have, we don't value much," Avila said referring to the malunggay plants that became a hit food supplement in America.

He said that making malunggay leaves into powder would provide convenience for the households to use it as food additive.

"Our food would become nutritious and healthy if added with the malunggay powder," he added.

Avila said he would still have to conduct a research on how to produce the powdered malunggay leaves, but suggested that every household in the barangays should plant malunggay trees.

Avila said in an interview that giving emphasis on the malunggay plant would be part of the "Gulayan sa Barangay," a vegetable production program of the City Agriculturist's Office.

He mentioned to "come up with forms to make the malunggay plant and its benefits popular in the city."

According to Avila, CAO has started a malunggay project in 2004, having about 800 square meters of land devoted to malunggay seedlings propagation in Sitio Philbanking, in Dumoy.

"It's for production consumption only," he said, adding that he is planning "to bring it to other barangays."

As a key member of the nutrition committee, Avila said he wanted to make sure that his program would address the nutrition concern of the city through the gulayan sa barangay and the malunggay project.

"If we want to address nutrition concern, we have to go grassroots," he stressed.

Avila recently integrated a Bahay Kubo concept in the gulayan sa barangay, where households would be encouraged to put up vegetable garden in their backyards.

He said that a special award would be given to households with vegetable garden that would meet the criteria to be set.

Avila said through this contest, households will be encouraged to plant vegetables in their backyards.

"But more than the contest, we would like to emphasize the importance of vegetables," he said.

He said that strengthening the gulayan sa barangay would help address the concerns on malnutrition and the low vegetable consumption of Filipinos.