One Sunday morning in the late 1990s, a lawyer came to our farm with an urgent mission. He wanted to buy right away 200 seedlings of latexless jackfruit. He wanted the big ones that will bear fruit ASAP.
We asked him where he would be planting the seedlings. And he said, his wife’s family had property in Quezon with aging coconut trees. He would plant jackfruit under them.
Why chose jackfruit? We asked Peter (not his real name). Did he read the article about Eddie Odsigue that we wrote in Panorama? Odsigue was the biggest jackfruit grower I had ever met then.
No, he said. The idea of planting jackfruit came to his mind just the day before he came to our farm. You see, he brought his family to Tagaytay for sightseeing. Along the way his wife told him to buy jackfruit to bring home because that’s her favorite. Naturally, prices in Tagaytay were high because it is a tourist area.
Of course, he obliged to his wife’s request and stopped by one of the fruit stalls. The seller quoted him P100 per kilo. Thinking that it was too high, he haggled but to no avail. He went to the next fruit stand and he was given the same price.
At the third stall, he had to pay P1,200 for one fruit that weighed 12 kilos. And that was the most expensive single fruit that Peter had ever bought in his 45 years. And that brought him to our farm for his 200 seedlings. He wanted to make sure that he will never again have to pay P1,200 for a single fruit.