Posted by: Jimely Flores | January 18, 2018

Covered Mango Fruits

Everytime I travel around Negros Oriental, I see mango trees decorated with nicely made newspaper envelopes. Being a farmer’s daughter, I know those are to protect the young fruits against insects and bugs but what engages my interest is how beautifully and meticulously the covers were done. Its even amazing that even the hardest-reached tip of the branches are beatifully made. But because most of those past travels were with groups of people, I never had the chance to ask, until now that the car is all by myself with a very engaging conversable nice driver. 

It turn out those mangoes were wrapped using tall thin stairs made from light materials probably bamboos. Usually those doing those beatiful jobs, are thin and nimble workers engaged by the contractor in the business of making mangoes bear fruit and flowers. The contractor in mutual agreement with the mango tree owner, is incharge of the entire job of making the tree financially fruitful. The owner will just take its 1/4 part of the net income (either in fruit or in cash) at the end of the harvest. 

I just thought how labor intensive it could be and yet during the peak season, the markets are flooded with mangoes that prices could go as low as 15.00 philippine pesos a kilo, a definite loss to the farmers. One of the disadvantages of natural farming practice in a market-ruled society. A definite misalign of cultures that policy makers and advocates should look upon with critical eyes and mind. 

I am advocating price floor policy in all agricultural and fisheries products  at the producers level and let go of the suggested retail price policy at the consumers level. This is the only way to solve the problem of inequitability.


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