Philippines Department of Agriculture online platform

The Philippine Department of Agriculture (DA) will update its Kadiwa ni Ani at Kita (Kadiwa) programme to serve more consumers in urban areas during the country’s lockdown.

Launched in 2019, Kadiwa is a market system which sells major agricultural goods at lower prices to help poor Philippine households.

The DA will now expand the programme, launching a multi-platform system, which includes Kadiwa Express and Kadiwa Online.

Agriculture secretary William D Dar said the implementation of a quarantine on the country’s largest island, Luzon, had created challenges in the movement of fresh produce.

“So, we are making some adjustments in our Kadiwa programme, using simple and technological solutions, to ensure the continuous and unhampered supply of fresh produce to consumers, particularly those in metropolitan areas,” said Dar.

“Through Kadiwa, even during this crisis, we can be sure that farmers get the best prices for their goods, while providing adequate, access affordable, safe, and nutritious food to the consumers.”

Under Kadiwa Express, the programme will tap the private sector and local governments in the transport and distribution of fresh produce to designated drop-off points in Metro Manila.

Farmers may sell their produce to cooperatives, associations and trading centres in Nueva Vizcaya, Nueva Ecija, Benguet and Quezon provinces.

From there, Kadiwa Express personnel will facilitate the transport of products to offloading points, where local governments can collect orders.

Darr also encouraged local authorities to take advantage of the Kadiwa Online, an online order placement system that provides a direct link to potential suppliers.

“We are hoping that our local chief executives will take full advantage of these Kadiwa platforms, which are much needed, especially in this time of crisis,” Darr said.

Kristine Evangelista, assistant secretary for agribusiness of the DA, said the Department will be prioritizing the rollout of Kadiwa stores in Metro Manila and other densely populated areas in Luzon.

“Besides the Kadiwa on Wheels, which has been very successful in its pilot run, we are hoping to open at least 66 more Kadiwa sites nationwide,” Evangelista added.