Variety is key in avoiding perennial crop wastage problem–DA

Published April 8, 2021, 7:48 PM

by Betheena Unite

The problem of having tons of unsold vegetables that ultimately get thrown away is something that must be solved once and for all.

To do this, Agribusiness and Marketing Assistance Division Chief Joan D. Bacbac of the Department of Agriculture-Cordillera Administrative Region (DA-CAR) has encouraged farmers in the region to plant diversified crops at different times of the year so they may be able to harvest  diverse produce at different times.

While she noted that this solution had been promoted years ago, she reckoned that “it is high time for the farmers to really appreciate and try it in their farms.”

Bacbac admitted that the proposal requires a lot of patience on the part of the farmers, particularly on the care and management of crops.

The good agricultural practices (GAP) certified farms are already producing diversified crops in order to meet the demand of their buyers and to avoid the possibility of overproduction.

“Do not look only into outside markets, it would be good to innovate and look for products that can be marketed even within the community,” shared Beverly Palayen, the owner of one of the GAP certified farms in Bauko, Mt. Province.

Bacbac said the Palayen family is currently selling pickles and jams out of their agri-products, particularly the green pepper varieties. They also developed a strawberry dressing that was introduced during the recently-concluded KADIWA Trade Fair in the region.

The DA official further encouraged farmers to join organizations that can provide them with assistance such as market linkaging by the agency.

Meanwhile, a total of 40 metric tons of various vegetables from the Cordillera highlands were delivered to market outlets in Lapu-lapu City after two farmers cooperatives from both regions were linked to each other through the DA ###