Veggie growers bloom in the digital market | Inquirer Business

Veggie growers bloom in the digital market

MANILA, Philippines  —Upland farmers in Liliw, Laguna are gearing up to sell more of their produce outside the province through a joint project of the non-profit Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (Searca) and socio-technoprise AppGeese Inc.

In a statement, the Los Banos-based Searca said the digital agriculture platform dubbed AgriEx, an application developed with AppGeese, is designed to unlock more markets for their fresh goods.

Searca and the Pasig City-based startup began working on the AgriEx platform in 2020, which features support structure and market linkage.


“[The] successful initiative has motivated the [town of Liliw] to actively seek collaborations, with plans to extend their agricultural produce to broader markets to sustain the growth of the farming community,” Searca director Glenn Gregorio said.


READ: Jica, DA roll out value chain project to grow PH vegetable sector

Through AgriEx, members of the Liliw Upland Farmers Marketing Cooperative (Lufamco) can sell vegetables they cultivated such as cabbage, string beans, chayote and radish.

Lufamco president Enrico Arvesu expressed their gratitude for the project that helped them plan and consolidate their harvest to reach a wider market.

“This opens more opportunities for our group, and online marketing gives us the opportunity to reach more customers beyond our local area. We truly saw our potential,” Arvesu said.


Liliw farmers operated as individual entities before their involvement in the project. Despite being part of the cooperative, they sold their produce individually and within the local vicinity only.

Starting with 10 farmer-members, Lufamco took part in a series of activities such as field visits, training in packaging and sorting and an introduction to digital marketing through the application.


READ: Veggie imports on the rise as more Filipinos embrace plant-based diet

For its part, AppGeese facilitated seamless transactions, ensuring prompt produce pick-ups within a day and offering immediate payment through e-money transfer, which is higher than prevailing market prices.

Since its inception, Lufamco attracted attention from more marketing partners including the Department of Agriculture’s Kadiwa market and Gawad Kalinga.

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The co-op also ventured into producing and selling its organic fertilizer with the support of the Department of Science and Technology and constructed a multipurpose building within the town proper to generate additional income through rentals.

TAGS: Agriculture, digital, farmers, vegetables

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