La Trinidad is known for its strawberries and highland vegetables. Unknown to many, La Trinidad also produces organic vegetables. Organic food is “in” nowadays, especially to health conscious people. La Trinidad Organic Practitioners (LaTop), a popular multi-purpose cooperative, produces organic vegetables which are sought after by tourists and locals. Organic produce from LaTop are often given to La Trinidad’s special visitors. Sometimes Benguet-based companies would give organic produce from LaTop as tokens because it is healthier than regular vegetables.
Organic vegetables have lots of health benefits. It is beneficial for everyone particularly to cancer patients because it does not contain harmful chemicals. Organic vegetables are more nutritious and tasty than regular vegetables because it is free from pesticide residues, growth promoters, genetically modified materials and synthetic materials. This is why it is sold at a higher price compared to regular vegetables. The cost of organic produce may be expensive but it is relatively cheaper in La Trinidad than when it is sold in Metro Manila’s grocery stores.
Producing organic vegetables also helps the environment because it reduces risks for soil and underground water contamination, unlike conventional farming that uses harmful chemicals.
LaTop produces assorted highland and lowland vegetables such as lettuce, spinach, cabbage, womboc, carrots, potatoes, yacon, beets and others. Aside from vegetables, they also produce organic fruits such as bananas, pineapples, blueberries and other assorted fruits. LaTop also produces processed products such as pure Honey, Arabica coffee, herbal tea (lemon grass, guyabano, banaba, chia, ginger and dandelion), vegetable noodles, cookies, breads, and jams such as strawberry, blueberry, santol, and guava. *** –Leonila Juda Reyes, intern