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PRICE DROP

In Ilocos Sur, glut forces woman to give away mangoes

/ 05:14 AM May 31, 2019

Rather than sell them at a low price, a cacao farmer in Salcedo town, Ilocos Sur province, packed in plastic bags the ripe mangoes she had harvested from her trees and hung them on her fence for anyone to take for free.

Emmylou Arruejo Jomero, who also produces chocolate and other cacao products, said she had thought of giving away the mangoes because an unexpected glut had pushed down the mango retail price to P15 a kilogram.

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“Some traders were texting me that they would buy my mangoes by ‘tiklis’ (baskets) at P10 a kg. I told them I’d rather give them away,” Jomero said.

In the past two years, her mango trees had not fruited, she said, but this year, they suddenly flowered.

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Harvest continues

Aida Quiros, the municipal agriculturist, said climate change could have prevented the mango trees from bearing fruits.

A fourth-class municipality (population: 11,290 as of 2015), Salcedo is one of Ilocos Sur’s mango-producing areas. But it is known more for its rambutan and cacao, its “one town, one product.”

Quiros said mango harvest in the town was usually in February and March. But until now, mangoes are still being harvested, she said. —GABRIEL CARDINOZA

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TAGS: Emmylou Arruejo Jomero, glut, Ilocos Sur, Mangoes, Price
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