NFA Palawan gears up to purchase 5k bags of palay
The National Food Authority (NFA) in the province is preparing to purchase 5,000 bags of palay (unhusked rice) for the month of December despite the possibility of farm production going down due to uncooperative weather. Local NFA assistant manager Nerilyn Conde said the number of rice bags is part of their initially projected 15,000 bags of palay for purchasing before the end of the year. Conde said she just hopes that the weather would cooperate or the 5,000 bags might go down to 3,000 if not 4,000. “Kung puro basa ang palay ng farmer, hindi rin siya ma-accommodate lahat kasi yong pagtutuyo sa mechanical dryer hindi naman ibig sabihin one day tuyo na siya. Tapos may constraints pa tayo, kapag brownout, hindi na tatakbo ang ating mechanical dryer. May solar dryer pero kapag tag-ulan, hindi rin naman natin nagagamit,” she said. Conde said their plans to buy the volume of palay bags from Brooke’s Point, Bataraza, Narra, Rizal, Roxas, and Puerto Princesa is currently being curtailed by the problematic weather and the constant power outages that affect mechanical drying. During the months of October to early November, she said the NFA was able to purchase 1,843 bags of palay in Palawan, including the Calamianes Islands Group. The town of Narra produced the largest number at 639 bags, followed by Rizal with 528, Brooke’s Point with 411, Puerto Princesa City with 118 and Coron with 45. They were purchased following the approval of the P3 buffer stocking incentive by the Department of Agriculture (DA), a move that gave them the support to compete with the buying price of unhusked rice by commercial traders. Since October, the NFA has already been buying palay rice bags at P23 per kilo. “Ngayong November, hindi pa masyado [nakakabili] dahil kami ay nag-i-info campaign, nauunahan pa rin kami ng mga traders. Kasi sila nakaabang na sa mga magsasaka na nag-aani ‘yong truck nila,” she said. But commercial traders have already decreased their buying price from P24 to P22 due to the implementation of the suggested retail price (SRP) of rice in the market.
(File photo courtesy of National Food Authority)