The VillageGreenShop, your sustainable food enterprise

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Sugarcane Industry in the Philippines: Not so sweet

sugarcane

Over the weekend we went to the western part of Batangas to capacitate sugarcane workers and equip them of new skills so they can plan for other sources of income and set up livelihood when the sugarcane industry finally succumb to its natural death following the lifting of the sugar tariff by 2015 which as a consequence will create increased demand for lower priced imported sugar.

Their abject poverty is an eye opener to us and we would like to mainstream this invisible social challenge much more visible.

photo 4Take for example, a typical worker in the sugarcane industry in Batangas earns between Ps 50.00 – Ps 150.00 a day which is outrageously less than the statutory minimum wage. Not only that, some landowners exploit sugarcane workers by an unfair wage system called pakyaw or bulk wage payment. For example, groups of farmers or families are paid a flat rate regardless of the number of workers to work in some hectares in a sugarcane plantation. This pakyaw system enables each worker to earn P 45 a day!

Aside from low wage, sugarcane farmers have to deal with forced seasonal holiday when there is no work for four to six months. During this period, farm workers engage in grass weeding, coconut harvesting, construction work and other related farming works. The women augment income by doing laundry and domestic work. Others who couldn’t find similar work live on cash advances deducted from their wages so that when work resumes they have to work doubly hard to pay for their advances and pay for daily needs so others take out loans from friends and payday lenders or 5-6 loan schemes. Hence, during lean season, household indebtedness skyrocket to pay for food, education and other needs.

A typical family has 4 to 12 children. Although majority of the children are in school but in some big families, the young adult children stop schooling and work in the farm. It is also not a surprise that the bulk of child labor is in the sugarcane industry because children as young as 5 years old are forced to help especially if a family is contracted to work for “pakyawan” (bulk wage payment).

participants 4

SELF Matters help ABK Leap Project increase the capability of sugar cane workers and their families, expand their opportunities to increase skills and develop other income sources, help them access suitable financial products so they can build sustainable livelihood and improve their quality of life.

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Harvest Offerings, 22nd – 25th September 2014

salad greens1Hello,

Please check out our harvest offerings on Monday, 22nd to 25th September which you can pre-order starting today until Friday, cut off is 5 pm.

We are also offering subscription for September through December harvest.

Subscription Scheme

We do accept subscription gifts for your friends and family with our Cornucopia Scheme.  This is a free choice scheme where you determine from the outset the price and the items you would want in your weekly sustainable basket, and we will fill it out with your preferences e.g. all greens and veg or an assortment of veg and meat, plus probiotic, or rice or other items.  The choice is yours.

What is a subscription scheme?
Organic consumers become organic subscribers if you buy in advance either in one lump sum or in installment your food basket for 4 weeks or 8 weeks (if we didn’t hear from you, we roll it going forward) or at the beginning of the growing season.

In return for your subscription fee, subscribers receive an assortment of organic produce at discounted price which you have specified ahead of time, including frequency and number of periods.

If you would like to know what it is to subscribe, why and how, please call us at 0927 675 5199 or at villagegreenshop@btinternet.com.

Looking forward to hearing from you!

Sustainably yours,

TheVillageGreenShop Team

 

Rice

  • Red rice*

Eggs

  • Brown
  • Golden salted eggs (soaked in turmeric spice)

Bottled and other natural items

  • Peanut butter
  • Wild honey
  • Muscovado sugar
  • Tablea
  • Organic bangus sardines

Salad Greens (Depends on what’s available)*

  • Arugula
  • Romaine
  • Mizuna

Herbs

  • Ginger
  • Mint
  • Turmeric
  • Lemongrass
  • Red onion

Pakbet Mix

  • Bitter gourd (ampalaya)
  • Eggplant
  • Lady finger (okra)
  • Squash (calabasa)
  • String beans (sitaw)

Green & Leafy Veg

  • Kale
  • Chinese Kangkong
  • Jute Vine (Alugbati)
  • Spinach
  • Mustasa
  • Chinese pechay
  • Native pechay
  • Talinum

Other Vegs and root crops*

  • Salad Pea
  • Celery
  • Cauliflower
  • Cherry tomato
  • Carrots
  • Camote orange
  • Sayote
  • Broccoli
  • French Beans
  • Cauliflower
  • Zucchini
  • Yacon
  • Tender Beans
  • Cucumber
  • Pakchoi
  • Cabbage
  • Celery
  • Gabi
  • Labanos
  • Mongo
  • Patola
  • Saba
  • Tomatoes

Fruits*

  • Calamansi
  • Blue berries

Poultry

  • White chicken*
  • Native chicken*

Grassfed beef *

  • Knuckle bone
  • Ox tail
  • Ox tongue
  • Ox feet
  • Tenderloin
  • Sukiyaki
  • Ground lean
  • Ground sirloin
  • Liver
  • Ribeye
  • Stew
  • Kenchi
  • Shank

Pasture-raised Pork

  • Pork belly
  • Pork ground lean
  • Pork steak
  • Pork chop
  • Pork ribs
  • Pork sukiyaki

Grass fed cured meat (no nitrate, No MSG, 100% grass fed)

  • Longganisa
  • Garlic sausage
  • Herb sausage
  • Sweet tapa
  • Tocino
  • Canadian bacon
  • Burger patty
  • Pork Bacon

Lamb

  • lamb kebab cubes
  • Lamb shoulder chop
  • Lamb chop

 

Dairy Products*

  • Fresh cow’s milk
  • Carabao Milk
  • Probiotic drink
  • Mozarella
  • Kesong puti
  • Butter

 

Many thanks.

 

Pre-order not later than Friday 5 pm cutoff at

0927 675 5199/villagegreenshop@btinternet.com