NVizcaya NFA increases rice supply to cushion El Nino phenomenon
by Ben Moses Ebreo
Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya (February 18) -- The National Food Authority (NFA) has increased its annual rice supply this year in preparation for the onslaught of the El Nino phenomenon that is projected to reduce rice production in the province.
Leslie Martinez, NFA provincial manager said they have increased their Procurement Inventory System (PIS) from 70,000 to 85,000 bags of rice to be sold to consumers once shortage of rice supply will be felt in the province.
"We made the adjustment after coordinating with the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics(BAS) and projected sufficient additional rice supply and it can still be added," he said.
According to Martinez, the rice supply allotment for the provinces of Ifugao, Mt, Province and Nueva Vizcaya is totaled at 350,000 bags for this year which is enough to supply the needs of consumers despite the dry spell.
They have also tapped their existing agreements with local government units on a standby mode and ready to be utilized once the LGUs make request for rice supply from their office.
The rice supply relief assistance will be given to LGUs on a credit – based system where payments will be shelled out from the LGUs' 5 percent of their 5 percent Calamity Fund.
Martinez said the adjustments made for their rice supply is needed to increase the supply of rice in the market to stabilize the flow of the staple food due to the projected reduction of rice production in the province brought by the El Nino phenomenon.
Based on BAS report for summer crop-January 2010, the dry spell has damaged some 6,444.83 hectares of rice and corn fileds in the province incurring a production loss of 12,256.67 Metric Tons, equivalent to more than P3.1 million.
BAS projected damage for February to April 2010 is 15,193.67 hectares with a production loss of 33,906.81 Metric Tons or close to P9 million.
BAS projected production rice and corn this year covering January to April is 2,037,507 Metric Tons.
NFA stock inventory as of February this year is 26,608 bags of palay, local rice and imported rice combined. (PIA NVizcaya) [top]