NFA to buy 3M metric tons of imported rice to cushion dry spell
by Ben Moses Ebreo
Bayombong, Nueva Vizcaya (February 19) -- The National Food Authority (NFA) is set to procure some 3 million metric tons of imported rice in preparation for the worsening effects of the El Nino phenomenon in the country.
Leslie Martinez, NFA provincial manager for Nueva Vizcaya bared that the imported rice supply which will be sourced from Thailand, Vietnam and Pakistan will be distributed to their market outlets to cushion the reduction of rice production in the country due to drought.
President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has also urged Filipinos to conserve water in their homes to prolong the abundance of water supply in the country.
Martinez also said that they have also made adjustments on their rice supply requirement for Nueva Vizcaya this year from 70,000 to 85,000 bags.
He said they have also tapped their agreements with local government units on a standby mode to provide relief food assistance in case of shortages on rice.
"So far, the LGU of Solano already requested assistance under this program and we are ready to provide the same to other LGUs needing them," he said.
A report from the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics(BAS) 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 for local and imported rice combined. (PIA NVizcaya) [top]