Pampanga farmers urged to switch to high-value crops

By Zorayda Tecson 

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga – Senator Imee Marcos on Thursday urged farmers in this province to cultivate market-driven crops in order to increase their income.

In her dialogue with the program beneficiaries of Young Farmers Challenge and Enhanced KADIWA at the Pampanga State Agricultural University in Magalang town, Marcos cited the importance for farmers to plant crops that are in demand in the market to earn more and ultimately raise their standard of living.

“You should plant what is in demand in the market,” she told local farmers in Tagalog, and urged them to switch from planting vegetables that are low-priced in the markets such as the “pinakbet” ingredients — eggplant, okra and squash to those that are being used for chop suey such as cauliflower and bell paper.

“The prices of vegetables for “pinakbet” are low and the prices of vegetables for chop suey are high. Thus, we have to level up from pinakbet to chopsuey),” she stressed.

Meanwhile, Marcos said she is happy to note that there are young farmers engaged in hydroponics and growing plants such as lettuce which are in high demand.

The senator met with the programs’ beneficiaries to get updates on its operations and to determine their issues and concerns in running their businesses.

The Young Farmers Challenge and Enhanced KADIWA projects are initiatives of Senator Marcos, in partnership with the Department of Agriculture. These provide capital to farmers’ groups and youth who wants to engage in agriculture.

While in Pampanga, Marcos also led the distribution of PHP3,000 each in financial assistance to more than 2,500 women in the towns of Arayat, Magalang and Mexico in line with the celebration of Women’s Month. (PNA)