MANILA - If Filipinos could not afford galunggong, then they should eat vegetables instead, Senate Agriculture, Food and Agrarian Reform Committee chair Cynthia Villar said on Tuesday, following reports of the sudden price increase of the "poor man's fish."
“Ako naman, eh kung mahal ang galunggong. Eh di wag kumain ng galunggong, diba?” Villar told reporters.
Reports showed that due to scarcity, galunggong is now priced at P300 per kilo, more expensive than pork and chicken.
“There are other alternatives na pwedeng gawin, bakit ba Gustong-gusto niyo 'yung galunggong kung mahal ang galunggong?” the senator said.
The senator thumbed down proposals to import galunggong to address high demand.
“Gustong gusto nila magimport, may naglalakad pa sa akin na bigyan daw sila ng import permit sa galunggong. Bakit ba patay na patay tayo?” she said.
“Mahal na ang galunggong [kaya] wag kumain ng galunggong,” she said.
Villar said families who could not afford galunggong should shift to vegetable dishes to curb the demand for the fish.
“Bakit di kayo kumain ng gulay? Mas healthy yun,” she said, noting that a diet rich in plants would benefit malnourished children.
Households can also save more money as vegetables can also be grown in backyards, she said.
“Kumain ng other means which are cheaper and available. Dami namang choices bakit ba iniinsist yan (galunggong)?” she said.