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PIA Press Release

Aklan farmers' groups, other grains industry councils brace for El Nino too

by Venus G. Villanueva

Kalibo, Aklan (22 February) -- Farmers' groups in Aklan as well as other grains business councils are also aware of the danger posed by El Niņo on their sector and have started including the topic in their meeting's agenda, according to the National Food Authority (NFA) here.

According to Judith Tindog, Sr. Grains Operations Officer of NFA-Aklan, one item in the agenda of the meeting of the Philippine Grains Industry Council (PGIC) here this week programmed for discussion is the El Niņo Phenomenon and mitigating measures to counter or temper its effect on grains retailers, wholesalers, farmers, millers, and other related industries.

The PGIC is one organization formed under the advisory of NFA. It is now headed by its president, Retired Gen. Frederick Romero.

Romero, according to the NFA, is a certified seeds grower and a grains businessman in Aklan.

PGIC serves as umbrella organizations of grains retainers, grains confederation, farmers, millers, and grains wholesalers and retailers.

Meanwhile, NFA-Aklan is on its sustained palay procurement in the different rice-producing areas in the province.

Tindog said the NFA procurement team will be buying palay in Liloan, Malinao this week. NFA buys palay at P17.40 per kilo when delivered at the grains center and P17.20 per kilo in the field.

The NFA here is also preparing for local milling. It is also preparing its warehouse for farmers who would be selling their produce to the food agency, as well as its forthcoming share of imported rice in preparation for El Niņo.

Despite the El Niņo threat, Tindog revealed there are still farmers who are buying certified seeds from them for planting this cropping season.

Tindog attributed this to some areas in the province which continues to have enough supply of water for their ricefields despite the dry spell now felt in some areas of the province.

Aklan, according to PAGASA, will be moderately affected by the El Niņo. El Niņo is predicted to last until July of this year. (PIA) [top]

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