The wholesale price range for carrots remains steady and no significant fluctuations were recorded in the past week. Based on the gathered data by the Benguet Agri-Pinoy Trading Center (BAPTC), the price for May 24 is P25-P40; P20-P26 for May 25; P10-25 for May 26, and P20-P23 for May 27. Moreover, they noted that there was no significant increase in traded volumes of agricultural commodities in the past week wherein, a total of 240.75 Metric tons were being traded daily on the average from May 24-27.
Buyers of vegetables would usually go early to the trading centers at La Trinidad, Benguet with preferred quality in mind. These qualities include freshness, large size, and unblemished physical appearance considering their established market demands. Hence, some vegetables not meeting the requirements of the buyers would not be purchased within the day and sold at a lower price the following day. To avoid spoilage and overstay in the trading center, some farmers market their products outside of the major trading centers and hope to still get a high price for their remaining produce. One of them is Ms. Daisy Agapito, cousin of Mr. Elmer Empil from Batan, Kabayan, Benguet who resorted to selling the latter’s remaining carrots through online platform, particularly Facebook. The post has gained attention on social media after the unselected carrots (palaspasan) were sold at a bargain price of P10 pesos per kilogram (kg).
In an interview with Ms. Agapito by the AMAD personnel, the carrots posted online were the remaining unsold produce of Mr. Empil from the La Trinidad trading centers. Ms. Agapito shared that they harvested two truckloads of carrots which they immediately queued at the trading center last May 26. The first truckload was completely bought on the same day while some carrots were selected (pili) from the second truck on the next day, May 27.
The farmer who needs to go back to the farm to transport another load of vegetables entrusted his produce to Ms. Agapito. The latter, accordingly, tried to look for a buyer at the same price until May 28, Saturday, but there were no takers. To avoid their produce from being spoiled knowing that there were no sure buyers to purchase their remaining mixed carrots, Ms. Agapito shared that she decided to sell the carrots at a lower price in Cabanao, Balili, La Trinidad. She utilized her Facebook account for a faster sale. And by 1:00 PM, all the remaining carrots were sold.
“Most of the buyers are the people who read my post on social media and the passers-by,” expressed Ms. Agapito. She was thankful to all the buyers and those who helped them in marketing the carrots online resulting in their complete purchase in more or less an hour after posting.
The story of Mr. Empil and Ms. Agapito shows how enterprising farmers are to sell their produce, avoid spoilage, and get the maximum profit.
The DA has been helping farmers bring their produce to the markets within and outside the region through the Kadiwa ni Ani at Kita. Since January this year, a total of 65,555 MT of agricultural produce with the monetary value of Php4,281,889.00 were sold through the Kadiwa. Meanwhile, small vegetable farmers that do not have transport vehicles are also provided with logistics support through the farmer’s cooperatives and associations (FCAs). Aside from that, since last year, nine FCAs and six LGUs were provided with Php39.3 Million total funds through the Bayanihan II and regular funds for the purchase of delivery vehicles.
Moreover, 20 FCAs and one LGU were also provided with a total of Php7.4 Million seed capital in CY 2021 for the consolidation and marketing of their agricultural produce. Some FCAs have been and are continuously linked to the outside markets through private and institutional buyers, particularly in Metro Manila and neighboring provinces. In addition, the BAPTC, one of the major trading centers in La Trinidad, which is a DA Project has been providing marketing and trading assistance to the farmers.
The public is assured that there is enough supply of highland vegetables such as carrots and that the prices are generally good for the farmers. To further help the farmers and the agri-fishery industry as a whole, the public is encouraged to patronize the local products by “buying local, eating local.”//