The Organic Market of the Organik Na Negros! Organic Producers and Retailers Association has generated P2,432,550 total sales from January to July this year from seven agricultural products sold at the market, Ahmon Ledesma of Free Grow said yesterday.
Ledesma said the market started operation in 2007 and since then, customers double every year and the demand for organic food and products doubles as well annually.
The market sells organic rice, vegetables, fruits, root crops, poultry products, pork, and spices all supplied by local organic farmers and ONOPRA members, he said.
Among the products, vegetables have the highest sales with P717,400, then the organic rice with P553,100, spices with P346,500, fruits with P332,750, poultry products with P268,000, root crops with P152,800, and pork with P62,000, he also said.
Ledesma said ONOPRA can meet the consumer demand for organic rice but can only provide 60 to 80 percent of the total demand for organic vegetable.
Farmers have to double their production and they need to campaign and persuade others to go into organic farming because the demand is increasing, he added.
The organic restaurant also has an average monthly gross income of P500,000 with 15 operational staff, he said.
ONOPRA members displaying their produce at the organic market are Alter Trade, BIND, Buro-Buro Springs Vermi Farm, Free Grow, BMAPFA, Fresh Start Organics, Golden Organic Agriculture Venture, Honey Grace Foods, Humayan Ministry, Iliran Tribal Council, La Carlota Organic Coffee Producers, Monchitos, Muad Negros Farm, Inc., and Tabunan Organic Farm.
The new ONOPRA officers are Ramon Uy Jr. – president, Batchoy Henarez – vice president, Suzy Peñalosa – secretary, Honey Grace Catalan – treasurer, Dan Maraca – auditor, Ramon Uy Sr. – business manager, and Ahmon Ledesma – public information officer.
Members of the board of directors are Pastor Gerry Dionson, Dante Escarniosom, Ed Lopez, Bonnie Sanchez, Winnie Abarillo, and Mathias Sueño. ONOPRA also named five committee areas – the education, marketing and promotion, agri-tourism, membership, and special projects chaired by Henarez, Catalan, Peñalosa, Dionsion, and Lopez, respectively.*LTG