Ronald Costales - OFW
Ronald Costales - Image Source: agrizaccess.com

MANILA — Foreign investors, particularly OFWs (overseas Filipino workers), are getting interested in partnering with Ronald Costales of the Costales Nature Farms in Majayjay, Laguna.

Ronald has come up with a scheme attractive to investors who can expect to receive cash dividends in just a matter of weeks or a few months.

The investors finance the construction of a greenhouse where the high-value crops are grown. These include vegetables, culinary herbs and other high-value crops that can be grown in the greenhouse.

Costales had wanted to have partners because it costs a lot of money to build a greenhouse. Having greenhouses has a lot of advantages. He can grow his favorite crops throughout the year, assuring his customers year-round availability of the produce.

In the case of Javier, he invested P420,000 in the construction of a 300-square-meter greenhouse that was built in February 2012. By March, it was ready for planting. Ronald planted 480 hills of Japanese cucumber which produced fruits in 30 days after transplanting.

The 480 plants yielded an average of 1.5 kilos per hill, so the crop produced 720 kilos that sold for P100 per kilo or P72,000. The cost of production was about P25,000. This was deducted from the gross sales, and the balance of P47,000 was shared equally by Javier and Costales.

After resting the planting beds for a few weeks, French beans were planted on May 17, while the last harvest was on July 15. The price of the beans was quite good at P250 per kilo. In this second crop, they netted some P17,000 each.

The succeeding crops which were harvested in just a few weeks were similarly profitable. The third crop was lettuce which was harvested 30 days after transplanting. Javier and Costales had also a share of P17,000 each.

In the fourth cropping, Costales went back to French bean, a legume that can enrich the soil. Again, the partners made about the same amount of dividend.

As of January 27, 2013, the fifth cropping was in progress. The crop was Japanese cucumber.

It did not take long for other investors who are abroad to notice the investment scheme offered by Costales.

Dr. Aloy Llaguno, a medical doctor in Sacramento, California, US, has invested P2.8 million in the construction of two greenhouses with an area of 1,000 square meters each. The greenhouses are currently used for growing different high-value crops, including sweet corn. (Zac Zarian, Manila Bulletin)

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