‘Repolyo rescue’: How to help highlands farmers amid cabbage oversupply

January 16, 2024 - 5:45 PM
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Cabbages
Truckload of cabbages in this photo posted on the Twitter account of Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte on Jan. 16, 2024 (QCMayorJoy/Twitter)

Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte invited those who are interested to help Filipino farmers to give donations amid the oversupply of their cabbages in the Cordillera Administrative Region.

The city chief on Tuesday announced that the Tanging Yaman Foundation (TYF), a Quezon City 2023 Gawad Parangal Awardee, conducted a “Repolyo Food Rescue” with the Quezon City Food Security Task Force.

Belmonte said that the initiative aims to help farmers in the Mountain Province as they deal with the oversupply of their cabbage produce.

“Sa kadahilanang bumaba ang presyo ng repolyo dahil sa sobrang produksyon nito, hindi na sulit pang anihin at ibyahe ng mga magsasaka ang nasabing gulay,” the mayor said on the X (formerly Twitter) platform on January 16.

She said that the city government bought 4.5 tons of cabbages to be given to its constituents in 142 barangays.

“Kung nais ninyong tumulong sa pag-rescue ng mga repolyo, at matulungan ang mga magsasaka, maaaring i-check ang litrato na nasa post na ito,” Belmonte added.

The TYF said that donating P1,500 will “rescue” 100 kilograms of cabbage that may be picked up at the Ateneo de Manila University to be given to the beneficiary.

Donors may also entrust it to the non-profit organization to be distributed to lower-income parishes in the National Capital Region.

QR Codes and other pertinent details about the cash donations were indicated in the post.

The TYF said that farmers were giving away their cabbage produce due to a “bumper crop” or a very large crop.

Last January 6, a video of tons of cabbages being thrown at a cliff in Tinoc, Ifugao, was uploaded on social media.

Reports said they were delivered to La Trinidad, Benguet, but were rejected and disposed of due to the oversupply in the market.

“Wala pong bumibili at saka mababa ‘yung presyo, kaya inuwi na lang namin,” farmer Brent Orlando Pulano previously said.

Samahang Industriya ng Agrikultura (SINAG) chairperson Rosendo So said that while the Department of Agriculture has sent trucks to have the produce delivered to Metro Manila, there are still several vegetable supplies in the highlands.

Meanwhile, Agriculture Spokesperson Arnel de Mesa denied the oversupply, adding that there was a slight decrease in vegetable production last year.

He reasoned that there were no tropical cyclones that passed through the country in the last quarter of 2023, making the vegetable harvest plenty.

The state weather bureau recorded 11 tropical cyclones in 2023. It said that the figure is half the usual number of tropical cyclones that enter the Philippine Area of Responsibility in a year.