BAUANG, La Union: Grape patrons are not going to the public market here to buy their favorite locally-grown fruits, because they prefer picking it themselves in grape and fruit farms located in Barangay Urayong, which is home of the pioneering of the Lomboy Farms.
Bauang, also known for its Urbiztondo surfing areas, is fast-becoming the “Fruit Basket of the North,” which is part of the vision being pursued by Mayor Eulogio Clarence Martin De Guzman III.
A grape farm owner and grower, Annabelle Gapuz-Ancheta, said customers are more interested in picking the grapes from the vines than buying them from the displayed baskets along improvised shades located at the National Highway of the Bauang Public Market.
She added customers are almost not bothered by paying P250 per kilo for the freshly-picked grapes. That price would be considered “very stiff” by those who buy in traditional markets, according to her.
Ancheta said the farms where customers pick their fruits are supported de Guzman. Besides grapes, customers can pick guapple, papaya, mango and even dragon fruit.
Ancheta’s fruit farm was conceived from an idea of former La Union agriculturist officer, Avelino Lomboy, who in his 20-hectare vineyard grew the red-cardinal grape variety in the 1970s. Lomboy also successfully developed 300 vine varieties, and passed part of his knowledge to Ancheta, a relative.