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Health, News

Philip Morris eyes Abra towns for tobacco production

by Mauricio Victa / Correspondent

SOME towns in Abra province are being groomed to become among the country’s top producers of high-quality tobacco varieties, it was learned on Tuesday.

Domingo Agme, field training officer and farmer coordinator of the Philip Morris-Fortune Tobacco Corp. (PMFTC), said the towns of Viillaciosa, Luba, San Isidro, San Juan and Pilar were found to be suitable for tobacco farming.

Agme also said the PMFTC, a leading manufacturer of cigarettes in the country, saw the potential of these towns in producing quality tobacco as its mountainous terrains, weather and the availability of irrigation are suitable for growing the crop.

He added that the company discovered the towns’ potential after studying the farm soil and the availability of people who are either growing tobacco or interested in cultivating it.

“We see a bright future for [the] tobacco industry in Abra. We are currently infusing all the assistance we could provide [to] the farmers, which we have been doing for other tobacco producers in the country for years,” Agme said.

About 300 hectares of farms in the towns are into tobacco, particularly the K326 and PVH high-breed varieties, which came from Brazil and are used in leading cigarette brands.

Farmers in the country regard tobacco as a cash crop. Compared to rice, vegetables and other Philippine crops, tobacco has a fixed price and thus does not depend on the prices dictated by the market because farmers have ready buyers for their product.

Most of the farmers in northern Luzon and Occidental Mindoro province depend on the tobacco industry for their livelihood because of the huge returns on the investments they get and the ready market they have.

The majority of their produce are sold to companies like PMFTC through contract growing, wherein a cigarette manufacturer loans a farmer or group of farmers their capital with no interest, provide them with technical and training assistance, and later purchase the tobacco the farmers would later produce.

For Abra, Agme said the company’s main objective is to teach farmers the best practices in tobacco farming, taking into consideration the factors affecting labor and production done traditionally and present to them the latest in agronomy, tools and technologies that will reduce labor cost, expenses and time for better yield and improved and more profitable production.

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Discussion

9 thoughts on “Philip Morris eyes Abra towns for tobacco production

  1. good oppurtunity to all tobaco farmers and mayors of tobaco producing 1municipalities.7171 deta

    Posted by eric shawn | February 9, 2013, 6:39 am
  2. Iti kamaudianan na a ket Farmers to met la ti agrigat ta naparpardas met ti pannakapukan dagiti kaykayo nga usaren da nga pagsungrod da kadagidiay pugpugon da kaysa tay panagtubo ti kayo no bilang man agmula da kasukat tay pukanen da… Iti dakes na ket no saan da nga agmula ti kayo a ket talaga nga perwisyo ta agkalbo ti banbantay, agibbat ti ubbog, agresultan to met ti Land Erosion. No panagtutudo ket layos, No summer ket tigang met ti dagdaga…. ni piman to nga mannalon ket agrigat latta…

    Posted by Callos | February 9, 2013, 7:58 am
  3. Baka met agpatakder ti Philip Morris ti drying plantda dita Abra. Ket gatangenda ti tabako virginia a di pay nadry wenno naata pay. Su saanen nga masapul pay ti pogon ket awan mapokan nga kayo. Sapay koma ta kasta. Ti ket problamaentayo a ket baka met agdawat daguiti politiko ti pasukib from both sides of the fence (farmers and Philipp Morris) ken santo pay la agpariri daguiti NPA nga poro langgong.

    Posted by binilot | February 9, 2013, 2:12 pm
  4. SAAN A NGA MABALIN! nga lima laeng nga Ili ti maikkan ti gundaway na nga umasenso…!!!!
    Sir Domingo Agme: maybe you were not born yet when Abra engaged in tobacco industry where most parents were able to send their children to college and were likewise able to construct their new houses from the fruits of their hardship with this. This means that the capability or soil integrity of the whole province for tobacco production were already successfully tested not just the five towns that you picked. Maybe your soil technicians were just afraid to conduct soil analysis to the other towns nor you as the representative of the said Company has no balls to contradict the dictates or impositions of our scary powerful politicians. Forgive me and I am sorry if I am wrong but I can’t just help not to be suspicious for the sake of our poor helpless farmers/small landowners which always the victims of dirty politics.
    Those farmers or land owners of the different municipalities that were excluded, you can direct your grievances to the central office of this Company thru the help of our local human rights organizations for good governance and the like if our mayors are hesitant (kunwari) or playing hard to help you.
    I think you can not just produce your own tobacco without the assurance of marketability, hence it is very important first to coordinate with the buying Company. They will also provide seeds, training, and technical assistance or paraphernalia to ensure its success.
    I have only one CONCERN though. Please don’t engage with this venture if what CALLOS were saying are true and if the said Company will not introduce or materialize what BINILOT suggested for your own protection from the dreadful effects of landslide or soil erosion.

    Posted by farmer juan | February 9, 2013, 4:10 pm
  5. Hindi dahil interesado ang Phillip Morris Industries, ibig sabihin noon, diyan sila magtatayo ng planta. Posibleng mas nakakaigi pa rin sa kanila ang kontratahin ang mga magsasaka ahead of time para sa tobacco production nila. Similar sa ginagawa ng mga wholesale buyers ng gulay sa Baguio at La Trinidad. Ang magiging bentaha sa mga farmers lang ay derecho na manufacturer ang kanilang harvest dahil wala nang middleman. Kailangan lamang na may mag-guide sana sa mga farmers to organise themselves bilang kooperatiba para hindi sila babaratin at para may proteksiyon sila. Kapag may kooperatiba ang mga farmers, magkakaroon sila ng mas malakas na bargaining power para sa kabuhayan nila at advocacy voice para magkaroon din ng batas na magbibigay security sa kanila. At gayunding, sa pagkakaroon ng kooperatiba, mapipilitan din silang umayos sa kanilang mga patakaran sa buhay at magkaroon ng disiplina. Sa ngayon, ang sakit ng mga tao pagkatapos ng harvest season ay mag-sugal at uminom.

    Posted by Ruben C. Piston | February 11, 2013, 11:41 pm
  6. Ang balita tungkol sa balak ng Philip Moris ay parang napakaganda. Parang nakakainggit ang 5 Bryan. Ngunit kung maranasan ninyo ang hirap ng pagltanim at papasok ng tabaco sa pugon at pagluto ng 5 araw na diretso ng apoy pagkatapos yong halos kalahati ng bayad kada kilo ay napupunta sa RA 7171 tax na ilalagay lamang ni politico sa kanyang bulsa, baka magsisika.

    Ang problema ay hindi sa kahoy, hindi sa planta, kundi sa bigat ng buis at bigat ng corruptions. Hindi lahat ang nagtatanim ng tabaco ay na kapag-aaral ng anak sa likod ng hirap nila sa pagtatanim niyo. Sa kahoy, madre kakaw okukuwatit ang sagut. 3 taong Lang pagkatapos ng pagputol, puede na naman, ayon sa mga magsasaka. Peru sa buis na 40 porcento, sa corruption ng walang konsesiyang politico. Mamasyal kayo sa Pilar, hanapin ang bahay ng mayor at dating mayor na vice gov. Ngayon at kandidato pangkngress. Doon makikta ninyo ng dalawang mansions at mamahalin sasakyan na KATAS NG RA 7171, PAWIS NG KAWAWANG TOBAKO FARMERS.

    Posted by Tagamasid | February 12, 2013, 6:16 am
  7. Under RA 7171 scheme, 85 pcent goes to tobacco producing towns, 15 is shared by d rest. Vciosa received 7 m while Pilar had 68 m in 2010. Vciosa has his cars and house before he entered politics, other big recipients of 85 percent are more precautiuos n have MORE SHAME. Their shame will be finally JUDGED!

    Posted by Tagamasid | February 14, 2013, 12:08 am
  8. MY COMMENT REGARDING PHILLIP MORRIS CIGARARETTE COMPANY ‘S desire to establish tobacco

    industry in the province… this INDUSTRY WAS ESTABLISHED IN Ilocos Sur IN THE YEARS 1960- 1970 but

    IT COLLAPSED BECAUSE TO CURE THE TOBACCO LEAVES IN A HOUSE SHED THEY MUST HAVE

    FIRE-WOOD AS SOURCE OF HEAT.. PEOPLE INVOLVED IN THE INDUSTRY HAVE TO GET ‘WOOD’

    FOR THE ‘CURING PROCESS’….. WOOD WAS OBTAINED BY ILLEGAL CUTTING OF TIMBER FROM

    THE MOUNTAINS OF ABRA. THEREBY DENUDING MANY MOUNTAINSIDES OF THE PROVINCE

    RESULTING TO WATER-SHED LOSE, EROSION TAKES PLACE AND FINALLY SILTATION OF THE WATER-

    WAYS… CREEKS ENDING INTO RIVER TRIBUTARIES.. RIVERS.

    MORE TO COME.

    DR LEO.

    Posted by Leo B. Tuason, M.D. | November 15, 2013, 4:50 am

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