The current millennials could take a lesson from the case of a young bookkeeper in Bukidnon who gave up his job to go into farming. The fellow did not have much money to start with but he persevered and is financially well-off today. Now, our millennials are being offered interest-free and collateral-free loans, they should now start developing their farm projects.
We got the story about Benjie Monsanto of San Fernando, Bukidnon four years ago when he was 32-years-old. A few years before that, he gave up his job as a barangay bookkeeper in order to go into farming and is now a big time pumpkin farmer.
At the time we got his story, he was planting the Suprema variety on 50 hectares some of which he owned and the others he rented. He produced three crops a year and in each cropping, he always made a net profit that was reasonable enough.
Like many other farmers, Benjie also had his one big mistake. That was when he felt the price of the F1 seeds of Suprema was too high and decided to buy the F2 (second generation) seeds which somebody offered to him at a very low price.
Buying the cheap Suprema seeds was his big mistake because instead of producing the first class pumpkins, he got a very low yield of inferior fruits. He barely managed to break even from that particular cropping instead of making a big profit.
But he has learned his lesson from that mistake, and at that time we got his story, he only planted the first generation seeds even if they cost more. After all, they produce a high yield of quality fruits.
Benjie also encountered other challenges in the early years. He did not have enough money to hire harvesters and to haul the harvest to the access road. He also suffered from very low prices offered by buyers.
However, he persevered and his tenacity paid off. Because of Suprema, Benjie had gone a long way economically. Transporting his produce to the market was no longer a problem because he had bought a pick up truck. And he was very proud that he had helped improve the economic status of many of his townmates who worked for him.
His workers had bought their own motorcycles and other amenities of a better life. With their motorcycles, Benjie’s workers help haul the harvest from the field to the access road.