Okay, based on roughly 80 responses from the previous post asking what Top 10 produce items you purchase at the market/grocery, here is a list of Top 12 items. I stretched the list to 12 as the last two items were reasonably close to #10 and a natural “fall-off” in votes was evident after 12 items. For the top item, onions, nearly 90% of you listed it as one of your Top 10 items. For the 12th item, ginger, only 23% of you included it in your lists. While there are several variations of these items (latundan, lakatan or saba bananas for instance or white and red onions and shallots) I have unilaterally decided what the BASE item will be below for the purposes of doing a comparison against different markets and groceries. So instead of me amusing all of you for the next couple of days, why don’t you get off your tushes and head to your local grocery or market this weekend and take careful note of the prices for the following 12 produce items. You don’t need to buy all 12 items, just accurately report the going PRICE PER KILO at a specific and named shopping location. If we get some 40-50 credible responses, this will be a pretty good “point-in-time” comparison of prices… and if we deem it useful, we can do it periodically. To control the quality of data, I will ONLY accept data from readers who have previously commented on this blog and who provide valid email addresses. The reason for this is to avoid owners of groceries or other folks providing inaccurate data to make the results less reliable.
1. WHITE ONIONS. Medium to large size, white or sometimes referred to as yellow or Spanish onions. They have a slightly golden peel or skin, but the flesh of the onion is white. Here is a picture of the onions that should be priced (go to this post, and refer to onions in third photo, on the LEFT hand side of photo).
2. TOMATOES. “Native” tomatoes not large beefsteak or western salad tomatoes. These should be semi-ripe to ripe, medium to high quality specimens, not the seconds or mushy versions. Go to this post and look at the tomatoes in the third photo for the proper reference point.
3. GARLIC. Ideally, we should seek locally grown garlic, but I find that they have been trampled by cheaper and less fragrant chinese imports. But since native garlic is rare in many groceries nowadays, let’s use as the standard medium sized garlic, most likely NOT the native variety.
4. POTATOES. Medium sized potatoes (not the new or pebble sized versions). Locally grown and brown. Size of potatoes affect prices (they are graded even at the Benguet source) so it is useful to pick what you believe to be the medium sized potatoes and record the price of those.
5. BANANAS. Lakatan (third photo in this post). Medium to large sized bananas, roughly a day shy of ripe. Smaller bananas will likely have a lower price, overripe bananas will also have a lower price in markets. So think about 6-8 inches, but don’t bring a ruler to the grocery, people WILL look at you funny. :)
6. CARROTS. Medium to large locally grown carrots. Not imported carrots. Not the small baby or finger sized carrots.
7. KALAMANSI. Medium-sized, firm and green. Not large, yellowing and ripe. Photo here.
8. BAGUIO OR GREEN BEANS. Good quality and fresh, medium to large size.
9. CABBAGE. Green (not red or purple) locally grown cabbage or REPOLYO. Not chinese, savoy or other cabbage. Medium to large sized head.
10. KALABASA or SQUASH. Medium sized, nearly ripe specimen. Photo here.
11. PECHAY. The most common locally grown pechay. The stuff you grew in the school yard when you were in 3rd grade. Medium sized, fresh specimens. Photo here.
12. GINGER or LUYA. Medium sized fresh knobs.
Okay, if you wish to participate in the survey for the benefit of ALL marketmanila.com readers, please take the list of 12 items above and list down the PRICE PER KILO where you normally do your food shopping. Let’s do this for stores/markets in the PHILIPPINES ONLY PLEASE. If at the market, you may bargain to obtain the best price if you are inclined. At groceries, prices are fixed obviously. You do NOT need to buy all these items, but you will probably need several of them anyway. Then leave a comment on this post, in this format:
Mang Procopio’s Gulayan (name of grocery or market)
Jose Rizal Avenue (address or general area)
Saturday, 2 October 2010, 8am (date and time)
Total price of MM Produce Basket : PHP 795 (add up the price of all 12 kilos of produce)
1. Onions PHP50.00/kilo
2. Tomatoes PHP49.95/kilo
3. Garlic PHP76.00/kilo
ETC. (please follow order above or I will go blind compiling data! :)
Thank you very much. I am curious how many of you will participate in this effort. The more the merrier. :)
Happy produce shopping this weekend!