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DA sees record palay yield

Incorporating learnings from last year’s performance and barring adverse weather conditions for the remaining weeks, the Department of Agriculture (DA) is confident it will hit another record in palay (unhusked rice) production this year.

The DA said the interventions, continued fund support from rice tariffs, and favorable weather are major factors that guarantee high yield for the remaining months of 2021.

“It is likely that we would hit the 20-million metric ton level this year,” Secretary William Dar said in a news release yesterday, crediting the hard work of farmers and sustained support of local government units and the private sector.

“As we were able to distribute on time needed inbred seeds and other inputs, under President Duterte’s Philippine Integrated Rice Program (PIRP) and Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF), our farmers were encouraged to plant early, enabling them to harvest before the end of September, thus avoiding the typhoons in October,” Dar added.

An initial estimate from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed that for the third quarter (Q3) of the year, palay production would reach 3,752,730 metric tons (MT), which is 6.7 percent more than last year’s Q3 harvest of 3,516,346 MT.

The total palay production for January to September 2021 amounts to 12.55 million MT, which is 5.5 percent more than the previous nine-month harvest in 2020 (11.90 million MT) and 10.9 percent more than in 2019 (11.32 million MT), based on PSA estimates.

“With this year’s level of production for the first nine months plus the estimated fourth quarter harvest, we are confident that we will surpass last year’s record output of 19.4 million MT,” Dar said, citing the report of DA-PIRP Director Dionisio Alvindia.

Alvindia’s report stated that the Q4 production in 2020 (7.39 million MT) and 2019 (7.49 million MT) should provide an expectation “to harvest at least 7.4 million MT, bringing the total 2021 palay output to 19.95 million MT”.

Apart from the RCEF, the PIRP includes the regular rice program and the Rice Resiliency Project that cover non-RCEF areas.*PNA

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