Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Eat Kamote

The government is missing a point in a number of issues. One is the suggestion coming from the Department of Agriculture (DA) for Filipinos to eat more kamote (sweet potato). It is neither a bad idea nor a good solution.

First, the staple food of the Filipinos is rice or corn grits in the case of the Visayan region and some parts of Mindanao. But as technological backwardness in the the farming methods of the country coupled with other factors, rice and corn production shortage has become a nagging reality. Adding insult to injury is the reported presence of rice cartel manipulating prices of rice.

Eating kamote is of course not new to all Pinoys. It is part of of our diet. For instance, in some occasions, I would serve my family with rice-kamote (in chunks) mix as one traditional meal recipe. This I learned from my grandparents. Also, kamote is one of the best snack food that we have, prepared in a number of ways, from steamed to fried kamote or sweetened kamote que as an all-time favorite of office and construction workers alike. My lady is a big fan of kamote, too.  

Meaning, you don't tell us to opt for kamote when rice is not available for the meal or when we are hungry. But highlight that as a solution to the recurring low rice and corn production is a myopic response to food problem. I guess the best solution with immediate and long-term benefits is to address factors that have contributed to the woe of food shortage. Not the other way around. What are the factors? We have indiscriminate land-use conversion in the first place; low capital on farm production; lack of farm-to-market roads, rice cartel, farming technology crisis, etc.     

Through the Department of Agriculture, the government aims to make the country rice sufficient three years from now. I hope this will happen. Anyway, kamote is part of us Filipinos. In fact, when one is frustrated with his workers, the boss would tell them to go home and plant kamote. On this note, I would like to tell this to the government of Pnoy. 


Vernz said...

oo nga part of us ang kamote at talagang pwedeng gawing alternative, kaso may social stigma kasi ang kamote.. kaya di lahat tangapin ito... salamat sa pasyal.

Fretzel said...

when was this editorial published? i need an answer, just for my project.. was it on jan.12, 2011? thanks :))

Fernando C. Zamora said...

hi fretzel... nice name. first, thanks for the visit. regarding your query on date published, i am sorry that i can't give you exact date but this was one of ed cartoons i drew last year (2010). hmmm, if i am not mistaken days after pnoy was sworn-in president because the issue came out as part of the demands of the militant groups...