The Department of Agriculture (DA) on Wednesday led the signing of a memorandum of understanding with local government units here for a modern four-hectare Agri-Pinoy Trading Center in barangay Betag, La Trinidad.
The planned post-harvest facility will include existing vegetable trading post here and the expansion area would be a part of the land of the Benguet State University (BSU).
Agriculture Secretary Prospero Alcala said the facility is important because the existing trading post can no longer accommodate the great volume of agricultural produce of Benguet and Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) farmers.
Local farmers here harvest daily an average of more than 20,000 tons of various vegetables, fruits and root crops which are sold in various market outlets, including Metro Manila.
Benguet provincial Governor Nestor Fongwan, on the other hand, said the facility will further improve the vegetable industry in the area which is already a very viable industry.
The project as envisioned will not only serve as delivery area or “bagsakan” for the fresh agricultural products before they are shipped to other market centers but will also provide a vegetable processing plant.
It was learned from Alcala that one of the facilities will be able to process fresh vegetables into “instant chopsuey” –one of the favorite Filipino dish which could be made in just five minutes by adding hot water.