NFA Bontoc assures enough rice supply
by Andrew Doga-ong
BONTOC, Mt. Province (9 October) -- The National Food Authority (NFA) assured the rice consuming public of enough supply of the staple food even with the devastation of some rice producing provinces by typhoon Melinyo.
NFA Provincial Manager Celedonio Mendoza told local media here that the government is maintaining buffer stocks of 1.8 million metric tons of rice as part of its food security program. He explained that the buffer stocks will also satisfy the rice requirements during calamities, the traditional lean months and if there is low or loss of local production brought about by man-made or natural calamities.
Mendoza said the country traditionally needed at least 1.8 million metric tons of imported rice in addition to the local production for its one-year rice requirements adding that for this year, the government imported 1.8 million metric tons of rice from Thailand and Vietnam.
The NFA manager stressed that Mt. Province will have enough supply of rice even with the damages to rice crops wrought by typhoon Melinyo in the country's rice producing provinces. He said NFA Mt. Province is maintaining 10,000 bags of rice including the imported rice at its Bontoc warehouse while 40,000 bags as buffer stocks are stored in NFA warehouse in Bagabag, Nueva Vizcaya.
Mt. Province, a highly deficit area in terms of rice or it could not fully meet its rice needs, rely mostly on the NFA rice to complete its rice requirements. Department of Agriculture showed that total annual rice production in Mt. Province is 250,000 bags while its annual rice requirement is 363,000 bags.
Mendoza said his office established 176 accredited outlets all over the province, with an average monthly total allocation of 8,000 bags to distribute quality and cheap government rice. Accredited retailers sell NFA rice to end consumers at P18.00 per kilogram.
In support of the Food for School Program, the NFA Provincial Office provided 2,752 bags of Iron Fortified Rice to the Department of Education and 3,442 bags to the Provincial Social and Welfare Development Office for distribution to their pupil and pre-schooler beneficiaries. (PIA-MP) [top]