Palay, corn output higher in 3rd qtr
Louella Desiderio (The Philippine Star) - November 13, 2014 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Palay (unhusked rice) and corn output likely grew in the third quarter compared to the same three-month period a year ago, the Department of Agriculture (DA) said yesterday.

“(Palay and corn output) are positive compared to last year,” DA  Assistant Secretary Edilberto de Luna said in a briefing.

“It is more than last year,” he added.

Palay production reached around 3.3 million metric tons (MT) in the third quarter last year, while corn output was at 2.6 million MT.

For the January to September period in 2013, total palay output reached 11.360 million MT, while volume of corn produced reached 5.924 million MT in the nine- month period last year.

Data on the country’s agricultural performance, including palay and corn production for the January to September period is set to be released later this week.

As of the first-half, the farm sector posted a year-on-year growth of 1.81 percent amid higher rice and corn output.

The DA is pushing for the Food Staples Sufficiency Program (FSSP) to boost local rice production to meet the requirements of the country’s growing population.

The government missed its goal to achieve 100-percent rice sufficiency last year.

DA Secretary Proceso Alcala said the DA is undertaking a review of accomplishments and targets.

“We are working with IRRI (International Rice Research Institute), PhilRice (Philippine Rice Research Institute) and even FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) to see what we need to improve in the FSSP. We are hoping that we will be able to complete the review and fine-tuning by February next year,” he said.

With higher production seen for corn, Alcala said he would discuss with Presidential Adviser of Food Security and Modernization Secretary Francis Pangilinan the possibility of exporting corn grains.

Alcala said earlier they would propose the export of the corn grains by local farmers given an expected surplus in production.

ALCALA ASSISTANT SECRETARY EDILBERTO CORN DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS FOOD STAPLES SUFFICIENCY PROGRAM FOR THE JANUARY INTERNATIONAL RICE RESEARCH INSTITUTE PHILIPPINE RICE RESEARCH INSTITUTE YEAR
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