SAN FABIAN, Pangasinan – Some 70 families in Sitio Bagbag in Barangay Lekep Butao have relied on the calamansi plantation in their village as the main source of income and augmentation to some, especially during the pandemic.
Barangay Captain Ferdie Estayo said the calamansi plantation was started by the villagers’ parents, including his, in the 1980s.
“Dito lang sa Sitio Bagbag mayroon ng 6,000 calamansi trees at marami pa sa buong Barangay Lekep-Butao. Malaking tulong kasi ang agri-business, tuloy-tuloy kahit noong lockdown (Here in Sitio Bagbag, there are 6,000 calamansi trees and there are many more in the entire Barangay Lekep Butao. This is a big help because agri-business continues even during the lockdown),” he said in an interview on Tuesday.
Estayo said some of the residents in the sitio are tenants while some are workers who do the harvesting, pruning, among other duties, needed to sustain the plantation.
The produce from the area is being sold in Pangasinan as well as in some parts of La Union and Baguio City, and as far as Metro Manila, he said.
“Nito lang napansin itong aming plantation kaya pinagbubuo kami ng asosasyon o grupo para makakuha ng mga tulong mula sa gobyerno. Isa sa mga suhestyon ay gawin itong agri-tourism site.Just recently, our plantation was noticed and they asked us to form an organization or group for us to avail of the programs and projects of the national government. One of the suggestions is to make the plantation an agri-tourism site),” he added.
Estayo said calamansi is a suitable tree in their location as it needs little water unlike other crops, such as palay (unhusked rice).
“It doesn’t require a lot of water and so we planted the higher level of the area with calamansi and the lower part with palay,” he added.(PNA)