Department of Agriculture vows to help garlic farmers

June 21, 2019

The Department of Agriculture (DA) yesterday assured the public that it is doing its best in supporting the local garlic farmers not only for production purposes but also in selling their produce.      

Antonio Gerundio, DA-MIMAROPA Regional Executive Director, made the assurance in view of the trending Facebook post of a certain Mr. Jam Melchor regarding the “disposal of 70 metric tons (mt) of garlic” in Lubang, Occidental Mindoro on June 17, 2019.

In a statement, Gerundio stressed that the word “dispose” mentioned in the post was widely misinterpreted by many netizens assuming that the harvested garlic will be “thrown away.”  

“This is not the case,” said Gerundio explaining that they are helping the farmers in selling their produce by linking them to institutional markets, vendors cooperatives, and processors.

Meanwhile, Elsie Toverada, OIC-Municipal Agriculture Officer (MAO) of Lubang disclosed that during the harvest season from April-May, the municipality of Lubang had a total production of more or less 300mt. of garlic and already sold more than 200mt. ahead of Mr. Melchor’s post.  

“The 70mt. tons that was mentioned on his post was the remaining harvest awaiting purchase,” Toverada added.

Toverada also clarified that there is no oversupply of garlic similar to mangoes.

“In case of oversupply, garlic can be stored, in normal condition, for six to eight months depending on its quality and storage. Hence, throwing away their harvest is not an option even if it is not sold immediately,” she said.

Toverada added, there is more or less 10 metric tons of garlic left, which is not enough to supply all the coming inquiries. Interested buyers could wait until the next season of harvest for orders and contact the MAO.