Thursday, 26 May 2011 14:51
Since 2008, the USAID’s Growth with Equity in Mindanao (GEM) program’s direct marketing assistance to Mindanao’s fruit and vegetable growers have resulted to increase in revenues.
GEM said Mindanao’s fruit growers and processors earned approximately $24.5 million in increased revenues for the sector. GEM’s assistance to the vegetable industry, on the other, has allowed local growers to ship approximately $3.6 million worth of produce to key domestic markets.
According to GEM the high profits earned were due to the improved production methods obtained by farmers through seminars on Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), effective post-harvest handling techniques and market promotion activities.
The Northern Mindanao Vegetable Producers Association (NorMinVeggies), the Mindanao Fruit Industry Council (MinFruit) and the Vegetable Industry of Southern Mindanao (VICSMIN), in partnership with the GEM program have been implementing initiatives aimed at strengthening the competitiveness of Mindanao’s fruit and vegetable industries.
The producers associations have trained more than 18,000 small-hold fruit and vegetable farmers including former Moro National Liberation front (MNLF) combatants and their families to improve their production methods.
Gem had also supported the market encounter of the said producers with Visayas buyers.
Recently, the Mindanao fruit and vegetable growers have sought to expand their market reach when they met with prospective buyers during the 1st Visayas-Mindanao Fruit and Vegetable Market Encounter in Cebu City.
“Through this activity, Mindanao growers will gain better understanding of the quality and volume requirements of fruit and vegetable buyers in the Visayas,” MinfFruit president Atty. Antonio Partoza said.
Supported by GEM, the market encounter had also featured seminars on fruit and vegetable processing, post harvest handling and transport, product consolidation, and bulk marketing. (GEM/RVC-PIA9 BaSulTa)
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