(file photo)

A group of swine farmers in the city is planning to ship out to Manila the excess of local demand in live meat in order to stabilize local prices in the market caused by the oversupply.

Ariel Colongon, a consultant for the Palawan Swine Producers Association (PSPA), said the present demand in Puerto Princesa is 180 heads per day, and the excess output would be sold to buyers in Manila. The demand peaked at nearly 200 heads per day during the pre-pandemic period.

“Ibig sabihin, ito ay nakadepende sa law of supply and demand, sinasabi ng local buyers sa Puerto. Sila ang nagdi-dictate ng presyo, sila ang nagsasabi kung magkano. Dapat ang nagsasabi ng presyo ay ‘yong raiser kasi siya ang nag-alaga pero hindi nangyayari iyon, sila ang nagdidikta,” Colongon explained.

“So, nagkakaroon lang ng pagkakataon na tumataas ang pamimili nila sa farmers kapag wala nang supply, mataas na ang demand. Ito ang pinaplano namin ng association na mag-market sa Manila, since mataas ang demand sa Metro Manila para ma-maintain ‘yong gustong presyo ng mga raiser,” he added.

The current farm gate price of live weight is P120 per kilo, which is merely breakeven for hog-raising operations, whereas the lowest price was P110. If certain board members’ suggestion is implemented, Colongon says the ceiling price would be P125 per kilo of live weight, ensuring farmers a P5 profit per kilo.

He went on to say that a farmgate price of P130 to P140 is the best price for farmers to balance their costs.

“Ang intention ng association ngayon ay to reach the desired farmgate price na P130 to P140, kailangan mag-market kami sa Manila. Ang tendency non ay magkakaroon ng demand sa Puerto which is i-increase ng buyers sa Puerto ang pamimili nila. Kung mangyari ‘yon, mag-offer sila ng 130, 140, okay good, i-maintain natin ang demand. Ibig sabihin, ‘yong level ng demand para mag-balance sa supply,” he said.

In addition, Colongon said that the PSPA does not have a target quantity of heads to provide outside of Palawan. As long as there is a surplus from Puerto Princesa’s demand.

He emphasized that Palawan can compete both nationally and worldwide since it is free of African Swine Fever (ASF) and foot and mouth disease (FMD).

Colongon believes that improving Palawan’s swine sector would assist to socially and economically improve backyard raisers.

According to Colongon, the organization will begin releasing supplies in 2022 after completing construction on the required stockyard and hauling trucks. PSPA has finally met the standards set out by the Department of Agriculture (DA) in order to get their funding.

“Wala tayo stockyard, ito ‘yong mag-iipon. Consolidation area ito na dito muna iipunin para makapagpahinga ‘yong baboy, maging quality siya. Hindi siya ma-stress na husto bago siya i-transport sa Manila. Iyon ang mga kailangan natin at ‘yong hauling truck which is pwede naman maibigay ng Department of Agriculture,” he said.

He added that the organization is thinking about the well-being of animals that will be moved outside as well as the quality of meat once it has been slaughtered.

“Ginagawan namin ng paraan na makapag-transport o makapag-ship despite of all the facilities na wala pa. Tinitingnan namin kung posible ba na mangyari. Pero nakikita namin na napakahirap. Kasi ang mangyayari, from the farm kung saan man ‘yan manggagaling, diretso agad sa barko. Isipin mo, napaka-stressful ‘yon sa part ng baboy,” he said considering the effect on the meat quality.

The PSPA had a market match and had previously spoken with their customer via the DA-MIMAROPA Agricultural Marketing Assistance Division (AMAD). The terms and conditions that will be followed by the signing of an agreement have been agreed upon by both parties.

“Gusto nila na walang limit kasi sa taas ng demand sa Manila pero hindi pwede mangyari dahil unang-una, ang availability ng sasakyan natin ay barko which is only going to Puerto only once a month. Gusto nila weekly, ay ang barko available minsan lang sa isang buwan. Minsan sa isang buwan na lang ang mangyayari then ima-maximize na lang kung ilang ulo ba ‘yan,” he said.

According to the agreement, the buyer will purchase Palawan-produced hogs at the current market price. Members of the association may get a P5 royalty per kilo, which is added to their selling price.

They are also encouraging other raisers to become a member of PSPA as its programs benefit the entire hog industry of the province, he said.

If market prices remain stable, the PSPA will focus on improving the hog breed in order to produce high-quality pork.

“Ang tinuturo natin sa raisers, hindi lang tayo basta mag-demand ng presyo. Ano bang meron ang baboy mo, bakit ganyan ang presyo mo? Titingnan natin ‘yan kung maganda ba quality niyan,” he said.

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is one of the senior reporters of Palawan News. She covers agriculture, business, and different feature stories. Her interests are collecting empty bottles, aesthetic earrings, and anything that is color yellow.