DA floods Metro Manila with tons of garlic

By Jun Elias, The Philippine Star

Posted at Jul 03 2014 03:36 AM | Updated as of Jul 03 2014 11:36 AM

SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union, Philippines – Garlic totaling 8,000 tons were delivered to Metro Manila a week ago.

Ma. Christine de Leon, Department of Agriculture (DA) agribusiness and marketing assistance division officer-in-charge, told The STAR the garlic came from Ilocos Sur and Ilocos Norte.

“The delivery is part of the government’s contingency measure to ease the sudden increase in the price of garlic,” she said.

They are worth P200 per kilo, she added.

De Leon said prices of imported garlic mostly from Taiwan already matched the prices of local garlic at P280 to P300 per kilo.

“The prices of garlic cannot be controlled because the supply is already in the hands of traders and not with the farmers,” she said. “There is already an investigation being conducted on the sudden rise of prices.”

The DA central office has released P10 million to the Mariano Marcos State University in Ilocos Norte for the research of drought-resistant garlic to grow in a shorter period and can be harvested twice a year.

The research will also allow garlic farmers to increase their produce to meet the country’s 133,000 metric-ton demand for garlic.

Ilocos Sur and Ilocos Norte produce around 7,000 tons of garlic yearly and the bulk of the supply is being contracted by garlic traders in Urdaneta City and Manila.