Laya (ginger) is widely used as an herb. Old village folks pound fresh ginger and apply it as tapal on painful muscles and joints. It is believed that the aromatic smell provides a relaxing effect while the oil and warming effect relieves pain. Ginger is also added as flavoring in various food recipes. It is believed to relieve stomach problems such as diarrhea, gas pains, nausea and vomiting, poor appetite and constipation. It is also used to treat respiratory problems such as cough and colds. It was also found that ginger relieves head ache. With the proven healing effects of ginger, it is one of the ten herbal medicines approved and promoted by the Department of Health. Ginger is also added to soaps and cosmetics.
Ginger tea is said to be the most gentle form of consuming ginger. It could be prepared by boiling fresh
ginger root in water or by conveniently adding ginger powder processed from extracted ginger juice.
Ginger is grown naturally in Kapangan. Ginger grows best in warm weather and moist loam soil. It matures after seven to nine months. As long as the soil is rich with compost, there is no need for fertilization and use of pesticides. It does not demand much labor. After planting, weeding could be done every three months or not at all when mulch is applied. Planting material can be taken from previous harvest to reduce cost.
A kilo of fresh ginger could sell at 40 to 120 pesos depending on the price set at the trading post or based on supply and demand. For an area of 300 sq.m. planted with ginger, total expenses including labor of P17, 025.00 is incurred while a gross income of P24,000.00 is earned, giving Processing ginger to ginger tea powder was part of the herbal medicine production project of the Ubod-Apunan Association for Healthy Living (UBAPAS) while implementing the Community Health Care for Indigenous Peoples (CHCIP) program. It caught the attention of visiting friends from the WE 21. Twenty-two Japanese women headed by Shontoug friend Eiko Matsumoto had community exposure in Ubod and Apunan . This exposure visit promoted people to people friendship of the Japanese people and the residents of Kapangan. WE 21 also committed support for the start of CHCIP program in Bileng and Ampongot.
DAYUKONG peoples organization Bileng was then formed and embarked on
ginger tea production as a social enterprise with the WE 21 as its major
partner. Fair trade partnership was nurtured. It not only added value
in terms of increased income for the ginger producers but also led to
cherished friendly relations. Once or twice a year, members of WE21
visit to eat and sleep with the community.
In October 21, 2013, Martha Pataras, a member of UBAPAS was invited to
Japan where she personally presented the ginger tea to customers and
explained its source and how it was being processed and its health
benefits. The tea sold well.
To ensure product quality, policies were formulated in cooking specifically on personal hygiene and quality control.
ginger tea production sustains the peoples organizations socially and
financially. Socially, the community members ensure that sufficient
ginger is produced and come together to process it into tea. It
strengthens community dialogue and bonding. Financially, portion of the
ginger tea income is used to buy materials needed for the health care
program such as acupuncture needles, massage oils, cotton, alcohol and
other needs. They can now afford to pay the per diem of the health
workers. Forty percent (40%) of the net profit in ginger tea goes to the
individual members who participated in the tea production.