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PIA Press Release

NFA palay-buying not affected by El Niņo

BacolodCity (31 March) -- The National Food Authority's palay procurement has hit a total of 962,655 bags as of the third week of March in spite of the effect of El Nino to the country's agricultural production.

The NFA bought 489,114 bags of palay in January; 339,543 bags in February and 133,998 bags by the third week of March. The agency is targeting to buy 696,900 bags for April, the peak of summer harvest.

For the same period last year, the NFA was able to buy some 1.2 million bags of palay.

Palay procurement in Negros Occidental in 2009 based on NFA records reached 41,947 bags. The procurement was done through direct scheme and 4,941 bags of palay were procured thru the Farmers Option to Buy Back (FOBB). A total of 57 individual farmers and farmers' cooperatives were served by the palay procurement program.

Farm level price of palay currently averages P16.82 per kilo. It was P16.07 per kilo during last year's same period, a difference of P.75 per kilo or P37.50 per cavan of 50 kilograms.

The NFA, meanwhile, buys clean and dry palay at P17.70 per kilogram inclusive of drying, transport and cooperative development incentives. The grant of these incentives brings the agency's effective palay buying price to P885 per 50 kg.

According to NFA Administrator Jessup Navarro, aside from enjoying a high ex-farm prices, which at Negros Occidental started to increase to P19.23/kg in March 2009 until June 2009, for their produce, farmers at present have the option to either immediately sell their produce or to wait for the price to appreciate further.

Also, those farmers who planted their crop early were spared from the ill effects of El Nino and produced clean and dry palay that could command higher price while incurring minimal expenses.

The NFA is buying at a daily average rate of 8,960 bags. It has set this year's palay procurement target at 11.7 million bags.

For more information on NFA programs, please send inquiries via NFA mobile number 0917-6210927. (DA-NFA/PIA/EAD) [top]

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