Vegetable, root crops yield lower in Q2
Louise Maureen Simeon (The Philippine Star) - September 1, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The country’s production of major vegetable and root crops declined in the second quarter due to the dry spell that hit the country.

Among the country’s top vegetable and root crops are mongo, peanut, cabbage, eggplant, tomato, sweet potato and cassava.

In its latest quarterly bulletin, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said cassava production fell seven percent to 751,460 metric tons (MT) as some farm areas shifted back to yellow corn production because of the strict quality standard of buyers of cassava chips while other areas were kept in fallow to regain soil fertility.

Lesser area planted was also reported as some farmers were discouraged to plant cassava for industrial use due to the low buying price.

In addition, smaller tubers were harvested because of the dry spell.

Northern Mindanao was the top-producing region in the country, accounting for 41 percent of the national cassava output during the period.

Production of sweet potato decreased by 2.5 percent to 150,090 MT as the harvesting of smaller tubers was a result of the dry spell during tuber formation.

Bicol Region, the top producing region during the quarter, comprised 28 percent of the total.

Tomato production also went down two percent to 71,950 MT amid shifting of some areas from tomato to other crops due to financial losses brought about by the low buying price.

Ilocos Region recorded the biggest production, comprising 39 percent of the total output.

Mongo production fell 2.6 percent to 23,560 MT which was attributed to lesser pods harvested caused by lack of flush irrigation and the temporary shifting from mongo to okra production amid demand for export.

The Ilocos region was the top mongo producer with 42 percent of the country’s total production. Cagayan Valley followed next with 26 percent, and Central Luzon with 23 percent.

Cabbage production was also slightly lower at 22,500 MT following smaller heads harvested caused by the occurrence of pests such as whiteflies and ants, as well as the dry spell.

Peanut production dropped 2.4 percent to 8,260 MT due to lesser pods harvested amid the dry spell.

On the other hand, eggplant production posted a three percent increase to 106,340 MT, largely due to an increase in the area planted and fruits harvested.

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