PIA Press Release
Tuesday, January 03, 2012
NFA ships emergency rice supply to BatanesMANILA, Jan. 3 --The National Food Authority has shipped a total of 2,000 bags of rice to Batanes to effectively augment the food security inventory in the province.
According to NFA, the emergency rice shipment was made in the wake of the reported dwindling of commercial rice stocks in the province caused by the difficulty in transporting rice through the normal shipping route that crossed the Balintang Channel.
The difficulty in crossing the Balintang Channel has discouraged the commercial traders to continue with their regular rice shipments.
To effect the rice transport, the NFA hired MV SAVERS, a commercial ship which, unfortunately, also experienced difficulty in crossing Balintang channel and therefore had to dock at Calayan island.
As part of emergency protocols, on December 30, the NFA through the Department of Agriculture coordinated with the Department of National Defense to airlift some 200 bags of rice to the province using the C-130 of the Philippine Air Force.
The rice airlift temporarily addressed the tightness in supply problems until the main shipment arrived on January 1 when the MV SAVERS had finally crossed Balintang Channel.
The NFA emphasized it will continue to perform its mandate to provide emergency supply source in areas anywhere in the country wanting in supply of the staple.
In the case of Batanes, the agency will remain committed to supply additional buffer stocks as long as there is a problem in the supply of commercial rice in the area. (DA-NFA Public Affairs Department)