The Philippines is on mango overload.
Following a surplus of the national fruit brought by an extended dry season, the government is now selling them for a fraction of its regular price.
The Department of Agriculture (DA) launched the Metro Mango campaign yesterday, which sells fresh mangoes for PHP20 (US$.38) to PHP50 (US$.96) per kilo, depending on the quality of the fruit. Normally, mangoes cost around PHP58 (US$1.12) for the same amount. However, these prices are only available for those who buy in bulk.
According to a statement posted by DA Secretary Emmanuel “Manny” Piñol on Facebook, the discounted mangoes are available at the Department of Agriculture Central Office in Elliptical Rd., Diliman, Quezon City and the Bureau of Plant and Industry in Malate, Manila.
They can also be found in the Muntinlupa City Hall, Paranaque City Hall, and three Waltermart grocery store branches, specifically those in North EDSA in Quezon City, Makati City, and Pasay City. They’re available from 9am to 9pm in the Waltermart stores.
Vegetables, coconuts, commercial rice priced at PHP36 (US$.69) per kilo, and other agricultural food products are also available at the Muntinlupa and Parañaque locations.
Piñol said they aim to sell at least 1 million kilos of fresh mangoes in Metro Manila this month.
That’s a heck of a lot of mangoes but it’s actually only half of the surplus reported by growers from Luzon Island. Farmers estimated that there is an excess of about 2 million kilos of mangoes that would rot and go to waste if they’re not sold.
According to the DA, the glut of mangoes was brought by a dry spell caused by the El Niño season that led to “profuse flowering and fruiting.”
On Wednesday, Piñol said that Japanese firm Diamond Star Corporation has committed to buying 100 metric tons of mangoes for importing this season.
Time to make a bunch of mango floats, people. It’s for a good cause.