DAVAO CITY: The Anflo Banana Corp. (ABC) is adding China to its current portfolio of export markets by forging a partnership with GoodFarmer Banana Trading Corp.
“We are excited to partner with GoodFarmer because we know they are good in what they do,” said Alex Valoria, president of the Anflo Group subsidiary.
ABC currently produces and exports fresh Cavendish bananas to te Middle East, Japan and Korea under a market contract with UniFrutti Growers Services carrying the brand name Chiquita.
“This will provide us with opportunities for the huge [China] market and will also allow us to study possible expansion of our farms,” said Valoria, adding that the company is always on the lookout for expansion areas. ABC’s banana plantation is located in Davao Occidental.
Citing that the initiative of his company is in response to the call of President Rodrigo Duterte to look for opportunities in China, Valoria expects that its partnership with GoodFarmer will allow both companies to grow their respective businesses, because the ABC will have a strong marketing arm for China while the trading company will have a primary source of premium produce.
“This is a very good synergystic relationship,” said Valoria.
Under the marketing contract, ABC will provide 840,000 boxes of Class A bananas to GoodFarmer for two years.
The banana company will source the premium bananas from its 165-hectare farm in Don Marcelino, Davao Occidental.
GoodFarmer has been able to penetrate the Chinese market, considered among the biggest markets for banana with about 1.4 billion in population based on government estimates.
The agreement comes at a time when the Philippines and China have strengthened their linkages including in trade and commerce.
About a year ago, President Rodrigo Duterte visited China and the two countries have since been discussing about strengthening their linkages in trade, and the two countries signed about $24 billion in trade agreements during the President’s recent visit there.
In a press statement released after his visit to China, President Duterte said the two countries “have opened formal lines of communications between our government and agreed on the full resumption of the regular bilateral consultations mechanisms which were put on hold for several years.”
The President has also been quoted as saying that if there is “[an]investment, we can have more businesses, make the economy grow and China would likewise benefit from it.”
In 2015, based on government data, the country exported about 448,000 metric tons of fresh bananas, most of them coming from Davao Region, with a value of about $157.5 million. Bananas are among the top two farm exports from the Philippines, the other being coconut-based products.