PH farm sector’s 3 biggest losers
Garlic farmers were the undisputed losers in the Philippine farm sector in the first quarter of the year as unabated smuggling and imports continued to pull down farm gate prices of garlic.
According to data from the Philippine Statistics Authority, farm gate prices of garlic plunged by 50.9 percent in the first quarter of the year to P49.8 per kilo from P101.2 per kilo in the same period last year despite a 19.4 percent drop in production.
Seaweed farmers were a close second as farm gate prices of sea weed dropped by 26.7 percent to P4.32 per kilo. The PSA blamed the drop in seaweed prices to lower prices quoted by traders. Rubber farmers were third as rubber farm gate prices fell by 15.7 percent as prices in the world market dropped.
The other farm products that saw their farm gate prices fall were: palay, pineapple, coffee, mongo, cassava, pork, chicken eggs, milkfish, tilapia, tiger prawn, and yellowfin tuna.
On the average, however, farm gate prices increased by 3.19 percent in the first quarter of the year.
The crops subsector saw an average 5.51 percent increase in prices. Farm gate prices in the livestock subsector dropped by an average of 3.27 percent while farm gate prices in the poultry subsector increased by an average of 7.77 percent. In the fisheries subsector, prices fell by an average of 0.33 percent. (Eileen A. Mencias)