Wednesday, May 30, 2007

DA-7 plans to set up barangay food terminals in every town

Cebu City (28 May) -- Helping the farmers earn bigger profits through direct selling to the consumers by doing away with middle traders and setting up the barangay food terminals in every municipality is one of the priority programs of the Department of Agriculture (DA-7) in the region.

DA-7 Regional Director Eduardo Lecciones bared that farmers are often exploited by middlemen who stand to gain more by buying the producers’ harvest at a lesser price. Farmers do all the sacrifices but their produce is bought at cheap prices by the traders, according to Lecciones.

In putting up the barangay food terminals, the DA-7 however, needs the help of the local government units to scout for the specific location of the food terminal, preferably rent-free, Lecciones said.

Lecciones however added that the DA-7 is willing to pay for the rent in case there the LGUs do not offer free space.

The DA-7 chief disclosed that they have already made a budget proposal for the particular project and it has already been endorsed to Agriculture Sec. Arthur Yap.

The barangay food terminals along with the ‘Gulayan ng Masa’ are part of the government’s hunger mitigation programs that President Gloria M. Arroyo wanted to speed up for implementation in order to fight poverty.

For the ‘Gulayan ng Masa’ program, the DA-7 conducts the distribution of one pack of assorted ‘pinakbet’ vegetable seeds including ampalaya, squash, eggplant, okra and string beans. This is aimed at encouraging the planting of vegetables to have a steady supply of food to decrease the risk of hunger incidence in the country. (PIA-Cebu/FCR)

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