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DA surveying provinces with surplus ginger to supply NCR

THE Department of Agriculture (DA) said that it is looking at provinces capable of helping Metro Manila with its ginger shortage which has caused prices to surge.

In a statement, Agriculture Undersecretary for High Value Crops Cheryl Marie Natividad-Caballero said: “If the challenge is logistics, then how do we help (producers) bring the crop to Metro Manila systematically,” she added.

Ms. Natividad-Caballero said last week that demand for ginger from the processing sector was behind the tight supply.

The retail price of ginger in Metro Manila markets was between P220 and P280 per kilogram as of June 6, according to DA price monitors.

She added that the DA is looking closely at usage, consumption, and sourcing for shallots as well.

Additionally, Ms. Natividad-Caballero said that the agency is seeking to expand the production of garlic in the Ilocos Region. 

“The DA is supporting efforts to preserve the garlic heritage through genomics. So, we are looking at a strategic investment in resilient agriculture…to again position our bawang as the white gold of Ilocos,” she added.

Garlic production accounted for only 2.6% of annual demand of 146,879 metric tons, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority. Ilocos Norte, Batanes and Nueva Ecija are the top three producers of garlic. — Adrian H. Halili