There are no plantains in Puerto Rico
The Secretary of Agriculture, Carlos Flores Ortega, said that in two weeks plantains should arrive in supermarkets from countries like Costa Rica and the Dominican Republic to meet local demand. Truth is, it's almost a miracle finding a plantain in the country right now.
In addition, some people complain because the price is sky high and sometimes they are so small that they are smaller than a banana.
Consumers interviewed by Primera Hora attest that they have paid up to $1.75 for a plantain. The product being sold is what little was saved after the passage of Hurricane Maria.
The Secretary of Agriculture said that the order of arrival was "according to the offers we received. The first to make an offer was Costa Rica, so theirs is the first shipment arriving. They are followed by Colombia and then the Dominican Republic."
Next week government officials will visit the Dominican Republic to evaluate the plantations to make sure they don't have fungal diseases or bacteria.
Once the locality is certified they have to evaluate if they can supply the volume Puerto Rico needs as well as the logistics to bring the product.
At the moment, 5 containers of plantains are arriving from Costa Rica, 10 from Colombia, and the country needs 15 more, which could be from the Dominican Republic, to meet the weekly demand of 30 containers.
If the Dominican Republic doesn't have the amount needed by the country, the Government will turn to Ecuador.
The amount of plantains in those 30 containers would amount to almost 2 million.
Publication date: 11/23/2017
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