Anflo eyes huge China market for premium bananas

By Nelson Bagaforo

November 7, 2017, 8:41 pm

DAVAO CITY – Homegrown conglomerate Anflo Group of Companies, through its newest subsiduary, the Anflo Banana Corp. (ABC), has partnered with a global agricultural firm to penetrate what is touted as the biggest and most flourishing China market for premium bananas.

The Davao-based banana firm is apparently taking advantage of the growing Philippine-China trade relation as espoused by the Duterte administration as it is signing a marketing contract with GoodFarmer Banana Trading Corp. (GoodFarmer) for its huge banana production in Davao Occidental, according to Alex N. Valoria, ABC president.

The marketing contract, he said,will allow ABC to have a better price for its produce, while providing the buyer with the best harvest possible.

“We are excited to partner with GoodFarmer because we know they are good in what they do,” Valoria said in a company statement issued Monday.

GoodFarmer is engaged in export-import business, including manufacturing, processing, transportation, sales and marketing of agricultural products.

Since its establishment in 2002, it has grown into a global supply-chain manager of high-quality agricultural products. Valoria said Anflo decided to partner with GoodFarmer due to its access to the China market.

“This will provide us with opportunities for huge market and will also allow us to study possible expansion of our farms,” he said, adding that the company is always on the lookout for expansion areas.

The agreement comes at a time when the Philippines and China have strengthened their trade and linkages boosted by the visit of President Rodrigo R. Duterte in that country a year ago.

The two countries have since been discussing about strengthening trade relation with the Chinese government as the two countries signed about $24 billion in trade agreements during Duterte’s visit to the middle kingdom.

In a press statement released after his visit to China, President Duterte said the two countries “have opened formal lines of communications between our government and agreed on the full resumption of the regular bilateral consultations mechanisms which were put on hold for several years.”

The President has also been quoted as saying that if there is “(an) investment, we can have more businesses, make the economy grow and China would likewise benefit from it.”

Citing that the initiative of his company is in response to the call of the President to look for opportunities in China, Valoria sees the partnership with GoodFarmer will allow both companies to grow their respective businesses as the banana producer will have a stronger marketing arm, while the trading company will have a primary source of premium produce. “This is a very good synergystic relationship,” he said. Under the marketing contract, the ABC is selling 840,000 boxes of Class A bananas to GoodFarmer for two years.

The banana company will source the premium bananas from its 165-hectare farm in Don Marcelino town in Davao Occidental.

GoodFarmer has been able to penetrate the Chinese market, considered among the biggest markets for banana with about 1.4 billion in population based on government estimates.

In 2015, based on government data, the country exported about 448,000 metric tons of fresh bananas, most of them coming from Davao Region, with a value of about $157.5 million. (Nelson Bagaforo/PNA)