DOST-PCAARRD launches new publications to promote indigenous vegetables

New publications on indigenous vegetables were launched recently in a virtual presser titled, “Rediscovering the Indigenous Vegetables in the Philippines.” The launch was organized by the Crops Research Division (CRD) of the Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic, Natural Resources Research and Development of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST).

DOST-PCAARRD Executive Director Reynaldo V. Ebora, in his opening message, highlighted the importance of giving renewed attention to the indigenous vegetables present in the country.

“They remain largely untapped and underutilized for we do not know much about them. We hope that through this activity, the wonder and appreciation of the Filipinos to indigenous vegetables will be ignited,” he added.

 

The virtual event showcased 10 new brochures on indigenous vegetables namely: 1) fruits from genus Artocarpus (langka kamansi, rimas, marang, chipuho; 2) ubod; 3) ubod at puso ng saging; 4) labong; 5) alugbati; 6) malunggay, katuray, kalabasa, kapas-kapas, kakawate; 7) tapilan; 8) weedy vegetables; 9) amaranths; and 10) vegetables for nursing mothers. The brochures are part of the accomplishments of the DOST-PCAARRD-funded project, “Documentation of Indigenous Vegetables in the Philippines.”

The project, which aims to increase the consumption of healthy and safe vegetables in the country, has also previously launched 10 brochures in 2019.

Dr. Lorna E. Sister, project leader from the Institute of Crops Science (ICropS), College of Agriculture and Food Science (CAFS), University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB), served as the resource speaker for the activity.

Dr. Sister reported that they have documented 143 indigenous vegetables from 20 provinces and they continue to collaborate with more communities and organizations in the country to broaden the discourse on indigenous vegetables.

She also explained the importance of indigenous vegetables in boosting the immune system and its role in food security. She added that indigenous vegetables are low-cost and highly nutritional food options for Filipinos most especially during the pandemic.

Media representatives, industry stakeholders, students, and interested individuals across the country attended the virtual presser. More than 700 individuals registered in the said event.

It was also attended by CRD’s Officer in Charge Dr. Allan B. Siano and other key staff of the division.

The virtual presser is part of DOST-PCAARRD’s series of virtual events to celebrate its 10th year anniversary with the theme “Harnessing the gains of GALING PCAARRD towards a more resilient AANR sector.”

Digital copies of the brochures on indigenous vegetables can be accessed and downloaded online for free from the DOST-PCAARRD’s e-library: https://elibrary.pcaarrd.dost.gov.ph.