ChaCha to sellout agri, food security to foreign firms — farmers

It seems that companies are readying their joint ventures in anticipation of the approval of Charter Change under the current administration.

“Wala pa man ang Cha-Cha, naghahanda na ang mga malalaking lokal at dayuhang kumpanya na magsanib pwersa para sa pagtatayo ng mga negosyo,” according to Mariano as he criticized Congress for approving at the Committee level the Constitutional Convention (ConCon) as the mode of amending the 1987 Constitution.

For the private sector, business is good under Marcos Jr. but farmers and small-scale food producers stand to lose everything once ChaCha pushes through — their land and livelihood.

KMP cited the partnership of Metro Pacific Agro Ventures Inc. of tycoon Manny Pangilinan’s Metro Pacific Investments Corp., and Israeli company LR Group Ltd. that will reportedly pour in a P1-billion investment to put up the country’s largest vegetable greenhouse.

The modern greenhouses to be built in a 22-hectare property in San Rafael, Bulacan target to produce 1.6 million tons of “high quality” vegetables like tomatoes, bell peppers, zucchini, and lettuce, among others for Metro Manila markets.

“This kind of megafarm will displace small-scale and backyard vegetable farmers who rely on farming for their livelihood,” according to KMP, citing that Bulacan vegetable farmers often supply their produce to major markets in Quezon City.

“Ensuring the nation’s food security and food self-sufficiency are Constitutionally-guaranteed mandates of the State but the goverment is only too happy to give up its responsibility and obligation to the private sector. Sa halip na buhusan ng pondo at suportahan ng husto ng Department of Agriculture (DA) ang mga magsasaka, mga pribadong negosyo ang kumikita at tumutubo mula sa agrikultura.”

Metro Pacific also has multi-billion investments in dairy and coconut processing.

KMP is pursuing its opposition to ChaCha, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) trade agreements, and further liberalization of agriculture under the current regime.

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