Increase in production, oversupply of mangoes due to El Niño – DA
Marje Pelayo • June 10, 2019 • 1781
MANILA, Philippines – Mango growers across the country were compelled to bring and sell their yield in Metro Manila trading centers.
According to the Department of Agriculture (DA), there is currently an oversupply of two million kilograms of mangoes in the country because the El Niño phenomenon was able to help fruit farmers improve their harvest.
“Nakapahinga ang lupa for some time dahil sa init. And then kapag biglang ulan, bigla na lang tataas ang production ng mga fruit (bearing) trees,” explained Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol.
Consumers may be able to buy fresh and good quality mangoes at P40 to P50 a kilogram at the DA central office along Elliptical Road in Quezon City as well as in Bureau of Plant Industry offices in Malate, Manila; in Muntinlupa and Parañaque City Halls; and in Waltermart branches in North EDSA and Makati City.
Fruit vendors at Kamuning Market in Quezon City noted a huge drop in the price of mangoes.
In April, they said a kilogram would cost P120 but the price dropped to P85 due to oversupply.
Nevertheless, mango growers said they were able to still earn a reasonable amount, especially in April.
They are worried, however, that at this time they still have a lot and they have no more spaces to store them in.
“Okay naman po kaso ang mga canary nagsipunuan na kaya walang mapagbentahan yung farmers doon sa amin,” lamented mango grower Enrico Tolentino from La Union.
(We’re okay however, our canaries are already full and our farmers have no other place to sell them.)
An image went viral on social media were plastic bags of mangoes were hanged on house fences in Salcedo, Ilocos Sur for anybody to take free of charge.
According to the DA, an oversupply of mangoes is normal every three to four years whenever the temperature is high.
Exportation of mangoes to other countries like Japan and Dubai helps to address oversupply.
Agriculture Secretary Piñol took pride in the taste and quality of Guimaras mangoes which he showcased in his recent visit to Russia. (with reports from Rey Pelayo)
MANILA, Philippines – Authorities announced an import ban on poultry meat coming from Poland based on a memorandum order issued by the Department of Agriculture (DA) dated January 21.
The ban covers the importation of all domesticated and wild birds even eggs and sperm from Polish chickens.
The Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) reported an outbreak of bird flu or avian influenza with a subtype of H5N8 in Poland today.
“Gusto natin na ma-maintain natin sa free tayo,” explained BAI Director Ronnie Domingo.
“Ang posible lang na makapasok ay ang migratory birds or ang mga importation natin ng poultry coming from other countries. Kaya pagka ganyan na may report na sa ibang bansa, stop na,” he said.
BAI also noted an outbreak of bird flu from April to September 2017 in several municipalities in Central Luzon which impacted several farms in the region.
Thousands of fowls were culled to curb the spread of the disease.
But Domingo clarified that since the mid of 2018, the Philippines reported it has controlled the virus and eventually declared the country bird-flu free to the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE).
A total of five countries were recommended to issue an import ban but it was Poland which the DA approved first, Domingo concluded. – MNP (with reports from Rey Pelayo)
MANILA, Philippines – A United States agency report reveals that the Philippines has become the world’s biggest importer of rice, just months after the rice tariffication bill was enacted.
The US Department of Agriculture – Foreign Agricultural Service report also projected that the Philippines will have imported a total of 3-million metric tons of rice before the year ends.
This is 58% higher compared to the 1.9-million metric tons of rice that the country imported in 2018.
The Philippine reportedly outranked China – the biggest rice importer– which is expected to import 2.5 metric tons of rice.
The Department of Agriculture record, however, said that this early, the Philippines has already imported 2.99 million metric tons from January to October.
DA spokesperson Noel Reyes added that 1.8 million metric tons of the total amount of rice that the country has imported were placed after the enactment of the rice tariffication bill in March.
“We cannot restrict. Kasi kung ire-restrict mo ‘yan, we are going against the law, unless the law says, we can only import so much,” Reyes said.
The DA admitted that there may have been an over-importation of rice in the country.
Because of this, DA Secretary William Dar and Senate Committee on Agriculture and Food Chairperson Cynthia Villar are planning to review the said law.
“That’s the feeling of the department because of the complaints of farmers and farmers groups,” Reyes said.
“That’s the wish of the secretary and Senator Villar after a year, they have to review the RTL (Rice Tariffication Law) and probably put in some more provisions so as not to over-exceed our rice requirements,” he added.
Several farmer groups share the same sentiment.
The Federation of Free Farmers (FFF) said the government must raise the rice importation tariff and focus on increasing the presence of local rice in the market.
“Kapag dumating na ‘yung panahon na naubos na ‘yung sobra, pwede naman nilang tanggalin ‘yung additional tariff na ‘yun para magpasok ulit ng imported. Ganun sana ang laro nila,” said Raul Montemayor, FFF National Manager.
“Parang gusto nating mamatay ‘yung magsasaka, na wala tayong nilagay na control sa import, pasok lang ng pasok ‘yung importation, pabagsak ng pabagsak ang palay, at parang napakahina ‘yung response ng gobyerno,” he added.
The Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP), on the other hand, believes that the Rice Tariffication Law must be scrapped.
The group said the latest record of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) shows that the farm gate price of palay (grains) is now at P15 per kilo.
The KMP, however, said there are still several areas in the country where farmers sell their produce at P10 per kilo.
“Hindi na rin po namimili ang National Food Authority kasi po sa ilalim po ng Rice Tarrification and Liberalization Law, hindi na po sila mamimili ng palay sa magsasaka kaya po lalo pong binabarat ng mga malalaking traders at cartels,” said KMP chairperson Danilo Ramos.
In a statement, Bantay Bigas group spokesperson Cathy Estavillo said that they have been giving warning that the rice tariffication law will gravely affect the local farmers.
“As we have decried repeatedly, RA 11203 will turn Filipinos into beggars of imported rice. We all have witnessed this law causing bankruptcy to rice farmers, and this will lead to displacement and ultimately declined productivity,” Estavillo said.
To date, the price of a regular milled local rice is somewhere between P35 and P38 per kilo in several marketplaces in Quezon City.
The DA, on the other hand, is confident that the price of rice will continue to go down to P30 per kilo.
The agency also sees a downward trend in rice importation by next year as the local production improves. (from the report of Harlene Delgado) /mbmf
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