Category Archives: Davao bananas

DAVAO DEL NORTE:The liberation of Pantaron banana farmers of Santo Tomas


“Out of the cage”

“Nakabuhi sa hawla, sa kulungan,” said Gloria Panimbo in describing her feelings and that of other small banana farmers whose land will be returned to them after a decade of being tied down to a lease agreement, that was to expire in 2027, with a banana corporation.

Panimbo is one of 57 small landowners of the Pantaron Landowners Association that inked in 2012 a 15-year lease and growership agreement covering 77 hectares in Sitio San Agustin, Barangay Pantaron in Santo Tomas town with NEH Corporation.

The return of the land titles to the landowners by NEH happened after a series of negotiatons, requested by the landowners, facilitated by Santo Tomas muncipal administrator Atty. Elisa Evangelista-Lapina .

In the Usapang Legal program, Panimbo along with landowners Emely Panague and Flordeliza Tambien, profusely thanked Evangelista-Lapina and her father Mayor Ernesto Evangelista for helping the farmers get back their land,

The local government support to the landowners is in line with the program of Mayor Evangelista who is seeking reelection in the May 9 polls.

Nanawagan si ๐— ๐—ฎ๐˜†๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐—˜๐˜ƒ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด๐—ฒ๐—น๐—ถ๐˜€๐˜๐—ฎ ๐˜€๐—ฎ ๐—ฆ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด๐—ด๐˜‚๐—ป๐—ถ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—•๐—ฎ๐˜†๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฝ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜‚๐—ธ๐—ฎ๐—น๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฏ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ฎ๐˜€ ๐—ป๐—ฎ ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐—ด๐—ฏ๐—ถ๐—ด๐—ถ๐—ด๐—ฎ๐˜† ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฎ๐˜†๐˜‚๐—ฑ๐—ฎ ๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ฝ๐—ถ๐˜€๐˜†๐—ผ ๐—ฝ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฎ ๐˜€๐—ฎ ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐—น๐—ถ๐—น๐—ถ๐—ถ๐˜ ๐—ป๐—ฎ ๐—ฏ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฎ ๐—ด๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜€ ๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ฏ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฎ ๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ผ๐—ป ๐˜„๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ธ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜€. ๐—œ๐˜€๐—ฎ ๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฏ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ฎ๐˜€ ๐—ฝ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฎ ๐—ถ๐—ต๐—ถ๐—ป๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ถ๐—ฝ๐˜‚๐—น๐—ฎ๐˜€๐˜†๐—ผ๐—ป ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฝ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜†๐—ผ ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜€๐—ฎ๐—ด๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฝ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฎ๐˜„๐—ฎ๐—ด๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ด๐˜‚๐—น๐—ฎ๐—ต๐—ถ๐—ป ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฝ๐—ฎ๐—ด๐˜๐—ฎ๐—ฎ๐˜€ ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ณ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—บ ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฝ๐˜‚๐˜๐˜€ ๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ถ๐—ฏ๐—ฎ’๐˜-๐—ถ๐—ฏ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฎ๐—ด๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐˜‚๐—น๐˜๐˜‚๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—น ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—บ๐—บ๐—ผ๐—ฑ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐˜€๐—ฎ ๐—ฝ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฎ๐—ต๐—ผ๐—ป ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฝ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—บ๐˜†๐—ฎ.

The landowners sought the help of the municipal government to end the contract this year as NEH and its management group ENTREP met problems in the operation of the farm and obligations to the workers, including delayed salaries and failure to remit SSS premiums and PhilHealth contributions.

The Pantaorn case hit two birds in one stone: return of the land to farmers and abort a looming labor problem that could derail government efforts against insurgency.

According to Evangelisya-Lapina, a former action offricer of PEACE 911, an anti-insurgency campaign of Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, Pantaron is a matter of cncern of the government’s inter-agency Security Sector because the United Pantaron Banana Worlers Association is affiliated with the militant, left leaning labor group Kilusang Mayo Uno (KMU), which the military has identified as a legal front of the CPP/NPA/NDF.

According to the municipal administrator, the NEH fully cooperated and agreed to end the contract by 2022 and would return to the landowners their clean, encumbrance-free titles.

Evamgelista-Lapina said Mayor Evangelista has ordered the Municipal Agriculture Office (Magro) to extend technical support to the farmers, who would now be farming their own land.


DAVAO DEL NORTE: ๐Ÿ“๐Ÿ• ๐๐š๐ง๐ญ๐š๐ซ๐จ๐ง ๐ฅ๐š๐ง๐๐จ๐ฐ๐ง๐ž๐ซ๐ฌ GET ๐›๐š๐œ๐ค ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ข๐ซ ๐ฅ๐š๐ง๐ ๐š๐Ÿ๐ญ๐ž๐ซ SANTO TOMAS MAYOR ๐„๐ฏ๐š๐ง๐ ๐ž๐ฅ๐ข๐ฌ๐ญ๐šโ€™๐ฌ ๐ข๐ง๐ญ๐ž๐ซ๐ฏ๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง


SANTO TOMAS, Davao del Norte (April 12, 2022)โ€”The landowners in Barangay Pantaron whose parcel of lands was tied in a 15-year lease contract with NEH Philippines Inc., have expressed gratitude on Tuesday to Mayor Ernesto โ€œTatay Erningโ€ Evangelista and Municipal Administrator Atty. Elisa Evangelista.READ MORE

DAVAO DEL NORTE: ๐Ÿ“๐Ÿ• ๐๐š๐ง๐ญ๐š๐ซ๐จ๐ง ๐ฅ๐š๐ง๐๐จ๐ฐ๐ง๐ž๐ซ๐ฌ GET ๐›๐š๐œ๐ค ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ข๐ซ ๐ฅ๐š๐ง๐ ๐š๐Ÿ๐ญ๐ž๐ซ SANTO TOMAS MAYOR ๐„๐ฏ๐š๐ง๐ ๐ž๐ฅ๐ข๐ฌ๐ญ๐šโ€™๐ฌ ๐ข๐ง๐ญ๐ž๐ซ๐ฏ๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง

SANTO TOMAS, Davao del Norte (April 11, 2022)โ€”A 77-hectare parcel of land owned by 57 landowners who are residents of Barangay Pantaron, this municipality has claimed back their lands from the leasehold of NEH Philippines Inc. after the administration of Mayor Ernesto โ€œTatay Erningโ€ Evangelista through Municipal Administrator Atty. Elisa Evangelista intervened to help the Tomasino landowners. READ MORE

DAVAO DEL NORTE: Santo Tomas Mayor Evangelista orders probe on plight of banana plantation workers

Humihingi si Santo Tomas Mayor Ernesto Evangelista ng isang komprehensibong report mula sa kay Agapito Ejalas, Punong Barangay ng Pantaron sa kung ano ang mga naging nagawang hakbang nito para resolbahin ang kaso ng mga banana plantation workers sa nasabing barangay.

May be an image of 1 person, standing and text that says 'KARAPATAN! KAPITAN EJALAS NG PANTARON PINASUSUMITE NG REPORT NI MAYOR EVANGELISTA HINGGIL SA ISYU NG MGA BANANA WORKER Isang komprehensibong report ang hinihingi ni Mayor Ernesto Evangelis- ta mula kay Barangay Chairman Agapito Ejalas ng Pantaron hinggil sa mga isyu na hinaharap ng mga banana plantation workers sa nasabing barangay. EVANGELISTA LEGACY โ˜…*โ˜… @SantoTomasDavNorLGU Bagong @santotomasLGU BHOTOMASDNAOCUI'

Sinabi ni Municipal Administrator Atty. Elisa Evangelista-Lapina na gustong isabatas ni Mayor Evangelista ang regulasyon para sa operasyon ng saging sa bayan ng Santo Tomas ay dahil may mga iregulasyong nangyayari at pang-aabuso na pabor sa mga lokal at dayuhang kapitalista na hindi naman residente ng Santo Tomas.

Paliwanag ni Lapina, sa pamamagitan ng pagpasa ng ordinansa maproprotekhan ang mga Tomasinong banana growers laban sa price manipulation na pinapairal ng mga consolidators at higit sa lahat mabigyan ng proteksyon ang mga manggagawa sa mga nasabing plantasyon sa saging.

โ€œKung seryoso at handang pagsilbihan ng Sangguniang Bayan ang ating mga manggagawa sa plantasyon sa saging hindi magiging mahirap ang pagpasa ng local ordinance para sa mga Tomasinong small banana growers at banana plantation workers,โ€ sinabi ni Lapina.

BARMM lures investors to 5,000-hectare banana farm area

COTABATO CITY โ€“ Model banana farms are soon to sprout in about 5,000 hectares in a special geographic area (SGA) of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) in North Cotabato province.

VENTURE. RBOI-BARMM Chairman Ishak Mastura (left) and BTA Parliament Member Suharto Ambolodto (2nd from left) show the MOA they inked with local investors over the weekend for the establishment of a 5,000-hectare banana plantation in Kabacan, North Cotabato. The plantation will be set up in adjoining villages under the BARMM in Kabacan town. (Photo courtesy of BOI-BARMM)

Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) – BARMM Member of Parliament Suharto Ambolodto said Tuesday the project aimed to alleviate the lives of farmers and to encourage more local businessmen to pour in capital.

โ€œThis activity is mainly to look upon the opportunities of local entrepreneurs to invest here since they would be investing for the future of our Bangsamoro people,โ€ he said.

The SGA comprises the 63 villages in six towns of North Cotabato that opted to join the BARMM during the two-part plebiscite held in January and February 2019.

Ambolodto said the signing of a memorandum of agreement with local investors further bolstered the endeavor with the initial set up of a banana plantation in a combined 5,000 hectares of farmlands in villages under the SGA in Kabacan.

Regional Board of Investments (RBOI) โ€“ BARMM Chairman Ishak Mastura said his office would facilitate the farmersโ€™ link to the investors in terms of profit sharing and other concerns.

โ€œWe also need to link the farmers to local investors, not only in the government programs or services but also to private sectors that would give them direct assistance to start-up investments immediately in our region,โ€ he said.

In a separate statement, RBOI Board of Governor Mohammad Pasigan said their office has been reaching out to farmers and local investors to expose them to investment opportunities in the region.

โ€œThe RBOI has even helped them connect to the tie-up ‘Harvest Program’ of Japan International Cooperation Agency and Land Bank of the Philippines that could fund both farmers and local investors on livelihood assistance through very reasonable forms of loan,โ€ he said.

Local investors who signed the MOA were Engr. Kaiser Usman of Usman Banana Plantation in Matanog, Maguindanao and Datu Jabib Guiabar of Kabacan.

To drumbeat the initiative, both businessmen encouraged other local investors to do business in the region and help uplift BARMMโ€™s economy.

โ€œWe are expecting to plant Cardava banana in the SGA to a farmland area of some 5,000 hectares,โ€ Guiabar said. (PNA)


P950-M banana investment eyed to help revive industry

ย April 19, 2021

COTABATO CITY — The Regional Board of Investments of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (RBOI-BARMM) has approved the registration of Al Muzafar Agriventure Inc. (AMAVI) that would pour in PHP950 million worth of investments in the regionโ€™s banana industry.The firm, also… Read More


GOING BANANAS. Apart from various problems that surfaced during the pandemic, the banana sector is also dealing with the Fusarium wilt disease that ravages plantations. The Pilipino Growers and Entrepreneurs Association on Thursday (March 25, 2021) suggested that the government look into scrapping or slashing fees, among other solutions. (PNA file photo)

Struggling banana industry seeks lower fees, fewer restrictions

 March 25, 2021, 8:11 pm

MANILA โ€“ The Pilipino Banana Growers and Entrepreneurs Association (PBGEA) is calling for fewer government fees and more supportive ordinances to pump up the troubled industry.PBGEA executive director Stephen Antig told the Philippine News Agency (PNA) in an interview on Thursday that it would…ย Read More

Read More PBGEA

Read More PBGEA

Banana industry scores Pinol inaction on Cavendish banana export woes


Banana industry players in Mindanaoย  said Philippine banana export to Japan is hampered by failure of Agricultureย Secretary Emmanuel Pinol to help resolve a major issue with theย Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW).

Pilipino Banana Growers and Exporters Association (PBGEA) executive director Stephen Antig said the group asked Pinol to have the Philippine government sit down in talks with the Japan MHLWย to resolve protocol issues surrounding the banana export industry.

stephen antig

Antig underscored the importance of the protocol issue, adding that this can only be done through government-to-government action.

Antig said PBGEA cannot intervene on the problemย  because the MHLWย “will not entertain any meetings with PBGEA until the Philippine government, particularly the Department of Agriculture (DA), shows concrete steps to address theย Fipronil exceedance of the Maximum Residue Limit (MRL)ย problem.

Antig said the protocol issue was raised in August 2018 on Fipronil exceedance of the Maximum Residue Limit (MRL) after Japan required 100 percent mandatory testing of Philippine bananas entering the country.

banana“The 100 percent mandatory testing delays the release of the bananas to the market,” he said.

He said the issue remains unresolved despite the corresponding actions by concerned exporting companies when MHLW of Japan required the Department of Agriculture (DA), through the Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI) and Plant Quarantine Services (PQS), to submit the protocol for the export of fresh banana to Japan.

Antig said PBGEA wrote a letter to DA Secretary Emmanuel Pinol on March 20 about Japanโ€™s feedback that the interventions implemented by the BPI are not enough or not the ones required by Japan’s MHLW.

He said that while they offered to facilitate a study tour, including meeting with the MHLW, the latter “will not entertain any meetings with PBGEA until the Philippine government, particularly the DA, shows concrete steps to address the MRL problemโ€.

Antig said the inaction of concerned government agency kept them in limbo, “as this problem has been there for the past eight months”.

ALSO READ; Banana exporters, growers suffer losses due to fusarium wilt

“Given this, the economic impact of the Philippine banana export industry will be a financial nightmare if the processing of imports will not be attended to and the fruits are left at the wharf or the warehouses for the duration of the Golden Week celebration,” he added.ย (with PNA report)