BUY THE BURAOTS. The intention of this report is to make members aware of the problem of FORMOSA PINEAPPLE farmers in Bicol. Last year we travelled to San Lorenzo Ruiz, Camarines Sur with a mind to buy up all the best and biggest pineapples we can find as a way to help the distressed farmers there. Our visit to the farm of Rex, father of eight and third-generation pineapple farmer, completely changed the way we saw the problem. This small Formosa pineapple he peeled for us is called a BURAOT, the smallest-sized pineapples that traditional buyers classifiy as “Out”. That’s exactly what it is. Super tamis, but in spite of that, has no economic value. No one buys them except paisa-isa by occasional picnickers, certainly not by big buyers. Buraots like these are left out on the field to rot, food for bats and mice, yun na. What a waste, and what a shock for us to learn that 30 to 40% of the Pineapple harvest are buraots. In this one farm alone, Rex has 17,000 pineapple plants. Forty percent, if one pineapple averages 1 kilo, that’s 7 tons of perfectly edible, enjoyable food that will not be sold. Let’s allow for poor math, cut that in half, that’s 4 tons of blameless pineapple sentenced to death, 4 tons that bring no money to the farmer. Rex says there are dozens of farms like his in San Lorenzo Ruiz. Say 24 farms, that’s 160 tons of “unsaleable” rotting pineapples. We got to visit a much bigger town called Labo, 52 barangays to San Lorenzo Ruiz’s 12. We figure that’s least 700 tons of wasted pineapple.

We ate a lot of these buraots the whole time we were in Camarines Sur. There’s absolutely, absolutely nothing wrong with them, maliliit lang what does it matter? We see the farmers, we see their difficulties finding buyers even for the “good size” pineapples and we see a way to right a wrong, and that is to BUY THE BURAOTS. It is the middlemen who decided that they have no value, but Andie and I say they do, and our group is there to prove it. If you call this a life changer for farmers like Rex, you are absolutely right.

FORMOSA PINEAPPLE GROUP BUY. We are seeking support for a Formosa Pineapple Group Buy in mid-October 2023. We’re taking pledges early for farmers like Rex in the towns of San Lorenzo Ruiz and Labo. If you give P599, your share will be 10 kilos of mixed-sized Formosa Pineapples. Please support this ambitious effort here

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