Farmers report drop in ginger farmgate prices as retail prices surge

FARMERS have reported declining farmgate prices for ginger, coinciding with a spike in retail prices in Metro Manila markets, analysts said.

Jayson H. Cainglet, executive director of the Samahang Industriya ng Agrikultura said that farmgate prices in Nueva Vizcaya have dropped to as low as P30 per kilogram.

According to Department of Agriculture (DA) price monitors, Metro Manila prices for ginger were between P220 and P280 per kilogram as of June 5.

Problem talaga ng DA ang monitoring and logistics support para makuha sa areas na walang trading hub ang mga ani ng farmers (It’s really a problem for the DA to monitor and provide logistics support in areas with no trading hubs),” Mr. Cainglet said in a Viber message.

He added that farmgate prices for ginger of P180 per kilo suggest that the retail price should be between P220 and P230.

“Normally, ginger is harvested before the rainy season, so the high prices now are quite surprising,” Raul Q. Montemayor, national manager of the Federation of Free Farmers, said in a Viber message.

The department has said that the spike in ginger prices may have been caused by the increased demand from food processors, crowding out consumers.

“On the local front, the demand for ginger for processing has also grown, so it is being made into tea,” Agriculture Assistant Secretary and Spokesperson Arnel V. de Mesa said in a briefing on Thursday.

“So, the demand is now big for processing ginger,” he added.

Mr. De Mesa said that imported ginger declined last year to about 143 metric tons, citing data from the Bureau of Plant Industry. — Adrian H. Halili