Durian growers in the region are feeling the effects of rising oil price as production decreased by 40 percent this season.
Mindanao fruit industry development (Minfruit) council president Antonio Partoza bared the immediate effect to the durian production as the inputs increased significantly.
From last year’s P800 per sack, the fertilizer cost has reached to an all-time high of P1, 940 per sack.
“This has affected our production since most of the growers have lost interest of growing with very minimal profit.” Partoza said.
Last year, growers could break-even or get back their production expenses just by selling durian for 25 pesos per kilo. This season, they may need to sell the fruit at 60 to 80 pesos per kilo just to break-even.
Partoza, a durian grower himself cited his farm as an example. He used to harvest 25,000 to 30,000 pieces per season but now his farm only yielded 10,000 pieces.
Aside from the rising oil price, the Minfruit council also attributed the reduction of durian production from the disturbed weather.
“We expect to get a lot of sun during summer but rain fall was continuous even during that time.” said Minfruit director Larry Miculob.
The same situation is felt by Tagum city growers. Regional Tourism chair Alma Uy has moved the celebration of the Durian Festival to an earlier month as various growers feared the shortage of the fruit that might not even reach until September in the market.
Miculob explained that lowland areas like Tagum City harvest earlier as compared to highland areas like Davao and Kidapawan.
This is why, no matter how the production decreased, Davao City can still expect durian fruits available in stalls up to December this year. (PIA)