Thursday, August 18, 2016

Agricultural “Bagsakan” Planned for Metro Manila

Traditionally, agricultural products have their “bagsakan” or trading post at the Divisioria Market. But recent efforts in cleaning up the metropolis resulted in the banning of these vegetable markets in Divisoria itself. This has led to a drastic reduction in the incomes of farmers who relied on having their produce sold at Divisoria.

The Department of Agriculture (DA) plans to establish a “Bagsakan”  in Metro Manila next month (September 2016). This will serve as the delivery point for all produce from the provinces and will enable the farmers to efficiently market and sell their products.

“There is no estimate yet as to the  cost [of putting up the center]. But we’re initially looking at tents just so we could address the problems of farmers,” Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol sent in a text message.

“We will do our best to do it in one month,” the DA Secretary said.

The volume of vegetables was greatly reduced because of these new guidelines on cleanliness in the traditional markets in Manila.

“While this development may initially be considered a crisis especially by our vegetable farmers in the Cordilleras, I look at this as a development which offers windows of opportunities,” according  the DA Secretary.

“I have long planned the establishment of a Farmers’ Trading Center in Metro Manila to allow provincial food producers to display their products which could be sold on wholesale basis,” Piñol chimed in.

A government owned property in Metro Manila is being eyed by the DA for the trading center.

“If the space which the DA could locate would allow it, we could even put up cold storage facilities and chillers so that meat, fruits and vegetables would have longer shelf life,” Pinol added.

“Vegetables, fruits, native chicken, goats, pork, organic farm eggs and others could be put on display in the farmers’ trading center allowing the farmers to sell their produce without going through the rigors of looking for buyers and a place to sell their products,” Piñol disclosed.

Also live fresh seafood and dried acquaculture products could also be sold in the “Bagsakan” particularly from southern Luzon, Central Visayas and Mindanao

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The Mail Man

Author & Editor - The Philippines' Web Magazine on Agriculture.

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