NFA procures 1.26M sacks of palay from local farmers in Q1
Marje Pelayo • April 4, 2019 • 2189
MANILA, Philippines – The National Food Authority (NFA) has increased its procurement of local farmers’ yield in the first quarter of 2019 by 6,149% higher than last year.
According to the agency’s first quarter report, the NFA has procured a total of 1.26 million sacks of palay from local farmers, from January to March.
This is way higher from the mere 20,540 bags procured in the same period last year.
NFA Officer-in-Charge Tomas Escarez noted that the agency was able to offer a much more reasonable deal with the local farmers.
“We are not surprised though because March is the start of the summer crop harvest and we were able to capitalize on our higher incentives versus the low buying price of palay traders.
While traders reduced their buying price to as low as P14.00/ kilogram, we on the other hand increased our buying price up to P20.70/ kg for clean and dry palay,” Escarez said.
Based on the NFA data, highest palay procurement as of March 31 by the NFA branches were recorded in Tarlac, Isabela, Occidental Mindoro, North Cotabato, Nueva Ecija, Sultan Kudarat, Bulacan, Bataan, Cagayan and Ilocos Norte.
Meanwhile, Escarez said the agency is now preparing for more palay procurement in the next two months in view of the dry season.
NFA also increased its previous target of palay procurement from 7.78 million bags to 14.46 million bags for 2019.
This is in accordance with the NFA’s new functions under RA 11203 or the Rice Trade Liberalization Law.
“NFA will continue to serve our farmers by buying their produce to ensure a reasonable return for their harvest especially now that farmers are suffering from the effects of El Niño and private traders are buying low,” Escarez said.
According to Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol, the locally produced rice will be out in the market by August when the stocks of imported rice are expected to be consumed. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Rey Pelayo)
MANILA, Philippines – Mariing pinabulaanan ng Department of Agriculture ang alegasyon ng ilang grupo ng mga magsasaka hinggil sa umano’y pagbaba ng presyo ng palay dahil sa ipinatutupad na Rice Tariffication Law.
Una nang nanawagan ang grupong Federation of Free Farmers sa Kongreso na imbestigahan ang pagpapatupad ng Rice Tariffication Law dahil sa naging epekto nito sa presyuhan ng palay.
Ayon sa grupo, bumaba sa P11 hanggang P13 kada kilo ang presyo ng basang palay habang nasa P14 hanggang P17 naman ang halaga ng tuyong palay.
Anila, ito ay dahil umano sa hindi kontroladong importasyon ng bigas at walang kasiguruhan sa polisiya ng kagawaran.
Ngunit ayon kay Agriculture Secretary William Dar, walang katotohanan at ‘exaggerated’ lang ang alegasyon ng ilang grupo at ilang dating opisyal ng kagawaran.
Aniya, paraan lang ito upang maisulong ang kanilang panukalang amiyendahan ang mga probisyon ng rice tariffication law.
“The interest groups, along with former DA officials, have exaggerated data on palay to push for the amendment or repeal of the RTL (rice tariffication law). They are resurrecting old arguments against RTL,” ang wika ni Dar.
Batay aniya sa survey ng Philippine Rice Information System (PRISM) na isinagawa mula Setyembre 16-30, 2020, nasa P18 kada kilo ang average na presyo ng palay sa Central Luzon habang P19 naman sa Cagayan Valley.
Ang dalawang rehiyon ang nangunguna sa produksyon ng palay sa bansa na katumbas ng 31.5 percent ng total harvest noong 2019.
Sa ulat naman ng Philippine Statistics Authoroty, lumalabas na nasa P17.12 kada kilo naman ang farmgate price ng palay sa huling dalawang linggo ng Setyembre – mas mataas kumpara sa P16.18 kada kilo na presyo sa kaparehong panahon noong 2019.
Ayon kay Dar, ang mga nasabing survey ay nagpapakita lamang ng totoong presyo ng palay na taliwas sa sinasabi ng ilang grupo.
“Makikita dito na hindi nagkakalayo ang data na ginagamit ng gobyerno, and definitely the reality is, hindi kasing baba ang presyo ng palay as interest groups claim on social media,” ang wika ni Dar.
Tiniyak naman ni Dar na nakahanda ang National Food Authority na bilhin ang palay na ibinibenta ng mga magsasaka sa halagang P19 kada kilo na nasa mga bodega at buying stations sa bansa. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Vincent Arboleda)
MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Agriculture (DA) on Thursday renewed its appeal to local government units (LGU) and the private sector to buy palay and corn directly from farmers to prop up prices as harvest season peaks.
In a statement, Agriculture Secretary William Dar said LGUs and the grains industry stakeholders will have to “step in” and purchase directly through negotiated contracts with the farmers’ cooperatives and associations (FCA) since the National Food Authority’s (NFA) palay procurement is limited to buffer stocking for calamities and emergencies
“The LGU- and private sector-led palay and corn buying will complement efforts of the Department of Agriculture through the National Food Authority to buy as much as possible from rice farmers using its 2020 P10-billion procurement fund,” Dar said.
“This should be part of the ‘new normal,’ where LGUs are taking a more pro-active stance by directly buying farmers’ produce — be these rice, corn, vegetables, chicken, eggs, fish and other farm and fishery products — at reasonable prices, and then including them in their food packs for their constituents,” he added.
The Agriculture chief said the NFA has also been directed to “roll-over twice its procurement fund so it could buy P20 billion-worth of palay this year.”
Further, he said provincial governments can avail of loans from the Land Bank of the Philippines (LandBank) of up to P2 billion at two percent interest to procure palay, and acquire farm machineries and postharvest facilities.
This harvest season, the DA said it wrote the governors of the top 12 rice-producing provinces to once again buy palay from their farmers.
The DA chief likewise called on the private sector, particularly those in the grains industry, to engage in long-term contract-growing and marketing agreement with farmers’ groups to buy rice for their employees and clientele as part of their corporate social responsibility.
Dar also asked the NFA to make available its warehouses for use by farmers’ cooperatives and associations (FCAs) and LGUs.
“We will accelerate the modernization of the NFA’s drying and milling facilities so they could provide much-needed services for the benefit of our rice farmers,” he added.
A multi-sectoral group expressed doubts on President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s sincerity when he announced that he is ordering the temporary suspension of rice importation in the country.
The group went on to call for the stoppage of the implementation of the Rice Liberalization Law.
The group claimed that the President’s pronouncement may be just like what happened to the other promises he made but were left unfulfilled.
The President made the announcement to address the complaints of farmers of the severely low price of palay as imported rice flooded the local market brought about by the Rice Tariffication Law.
The Bantay Bigas group doubts the President’s sincerity.
“Puro salita […] Wala siyang inisyu na Executive Order para ipakita na talagang sinsero siya doon sa ihinto iyong rice importation (All talk […] He didn’t issue any Executive Order to show that he is sincere in stopping the rice importation),” said Bantay Bigas spokesperson Cathy Estavillo.
The Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP), on the other hand, dared the President to make good on his announcement to suspend the rice importation as it called on the National Food Authority (NFA) to buy the farmers’ palay at a price not lower than P20 per kilogram.
“Stop killing the rice industry. Save the rice farmers,” said KMP Chairman Rafael Mariano.
The group suggested that the President may direct Congress to suspend and review the Rice Liberalization Law.
Meanwhile, President Duterte will meet with Agriculture Secretary William Dar to discuss the planned suspension of rice importation. (from the report of Mai Bermudez) /mbmf
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