Hopes dwindle for “carrot men”
The online fame of “Carrot Man” Jeyrick Sigmaton has not translated to an increase in the sale of carrots nor has it brought more government assistance to his poor town, local officials lamented.
Interaksyon reported that despite the attention that Bauko town got from the viral photo of Sigmaton carrying a basket of carrots, his fellow farmers have yet to feel any improvement in their condition.
Bauko municipal agricultural officer Carolyn Wandalen told Interaksyon that Sigmaton’s fellow “carrot men” find it hard to compete with better packaged and cheaper imported vegetables.
Wandalen said Bauko also needs more infrastructure and subsidies.
Ben Awakan, a councilman of Barangay Monamon Sur, was quoted by Interaksyon as saying that roads in Bauko are full of craters, which make it hard to transport farm produce. He said they also need irrigation badly.
Out of school youth haul carrots and other vegetables from Bauko to the nearest market which takes more than two hours.
Many farmers also fall prey to loan sharks and lose their farms.