(PNA file photo courtesy of DA-CAR AMAD)

BAGUIO CITY – Residents here and from the neighboring towns in Benguet would benefit from affordable seafood and freshwater fish products that would be sold at the Kadiwa stalls at the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) compound on Dec. 8.
The BFAR in the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), in a social media post Tuesday, said the Kadiwa stalls would operate from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the agency's compound in Guisad, beside the regional office of the Department of Agriculture (DA).

BFAR-Cordillera aquaculturist Lois June Fermin, in an interview on Tuesday, said the agency with the help of the DA's Kadiwa program brings products to the stores which are sold to the public minus the markup and other added costs.

"We do not have a markup to the prices passed on by the fisher folks from the source," she said.

Among products to be sold are fresh or marinated and deboned bangus, tilapia, shrimps, squid, fresh or frozen galunggong, and other fishery products.

There are also meat, fruits, and vegetables that would sold at the venue.

Fermin said the Cordillera is dependent on fish products from lowlands.

The region’s main fish produce is the tilapia which are grown in the Ambuklao Dam in Bokod, Benguet, and from the Magat Dam that is located within the boundaries of the province of Ifugao and Isabela in Cagayan Valley Region.

There are also some fish produce coming from Abra and smaller quantities in other areas of the region.

Fermin said that the goal of the BFAR-Kadiwa is not just to bring cheaper fish products to the public but also to help the fisherfolk market their produce.

“The program does not just benefit the public who can buy commodities at lower prices but also the producers who can market their products at prices that gives them an income,” Fermin said.

Tilapia raised in Magat and Ambuklao dams have a distinct taste that is different from those raised in fishponds at the lowlands, having a “tastier” meat, thus preferred by the locals in the region despite being more expensive than those that come from the lowlands.

Fermin said that for the tilapia, they prioritize the locally produced and get only those kinds that are not available in the region to help the local fisher folks.

Aside from BFAR Kadiwa in Baguio City every Thursday, the BFAR also holds similar activities in other provinces of the region for the residents.

A Kadiwa activity is scheduled in the province of Abra on Dec. 7.

Aside from the BFAR Kadiwa, the DA-CAR also maintains a Kadiwa store within the same compound where the public can also buy fresh and quality products from the farmers and producers.

The DA started to drum up the Kadiwa rolling stores and stationery stores in a bid to provide a marketing area for the farmers and for the public, in general, to access products at low cost. (PNA)