Pak Gulay products’ market in Isabela and Cagayan surveyed

To improve the processing technology for Pak Gulay food products, the DA-Cagayan Valley Research Center (CVRC) conducted a market survey to 300 respondents of various age groups and affiliations from 23 August to 1 September 2023 in selected cities and municipalities of Cagayan and Isabela.

This activity was conducted as part of the DA-BAR funded project that aims to expand the market for Pak Gulay in Isabela, Cagayan, and National Capital Region (NCR). The project is in collaboration with partner farmers cooperatives, such as Kaagapay ng mga Magbubukid, Mangangalakal at Eksperto sa Pagpoproseso, and AGRITRENDS Cooperative, based in Aritao, Nueva Vizcaya and Santiago City, Isabela. These groups consist of farmers and processors dedicated to addressing the issue of vegetable oversupply at the Aritao Agricultural Trading Post and their respective areas.

DA-CVRC developed Pak Gulay in 2017 to provide farmers with an additional source of income, as well as to give an appetizing meal option for children. Pak Gulay brand, trademarked in 2022, features two products. 

The first one, Veggie Crunch, contains a vacuum fried mixture of five lowland vegetables — ampalaya, kamote, okra, sitao, and squash. It is currently available in 60 grams and 100g packaging  and comes in four flavors (original, barbecue, cheese, and sour cream).

The second, Instant Pinakbet, as the name suggests, is a ready-to-cook meal that contains vacuum fried 60 g of ampalaya, kamote, okra, sitao, and squash along with a small sachet of bagoong powder and dehydrated garlic, ginger, and onions.

To expand the market reach of these products to NCR, the project team will conduct another market survey in Quezon City by October 2023. This will target 200 respondents. Insights from this series of activities will play a crucial role in further enhancing the products, ensuring that it consistently meets the needs and preferences of consumers of all ages in the target areas. (### Rena S. Hermoso)