Rey Anthony Chiu
TAGBILARAN CITY, Bohol, September 20, 2012 (PIA)—There’s is more than enough supply of rice stored at National Food Authority (NFA) bodegas even if the national government decided to cut heavily on import volume, assures Bohol NFA manager Maria Fe Evasco.
At the recent Kapihans a PIA, Evasco recalled that the government imported a total of 2.2 million metric tons of rice from the staple producing countries in 2010, one that was drastically cut to 800,000 metric tons by the following year.
This year, the government decided to import only about 500,000 metric tons by securing the 120,000 metric tons from Thailand and Vietnam while allowing private sector participation in the importation pegging a quota of 380,000 metric tons, to supply the country’s need for the staple crop, she said.
But, while non industry people have started airing concerns of possible shortfall in the supply of rice, Evasco assured that none of such will happen here.
She shared that Bohol has a share of the national government procured rice and the supply comes in according to a pre-programmed marketing plan, plus a local procurement program that assures us our bodegas are filled all the time.
“Fortunately, we have a big volume, hold-over inventory plus harvests from palay producing provinces,” that should keep us supplied for a time until the next delivery from out bodegas in Cebu arrive, she added.
Evasco came with NFA Bohol Operations manager Ramon Banluta and acting information officer Jhoel Lim to the Kapihan sa PIA to announce the National Grains Industry Week as well as the NFA’s Anniversary celebrating its 40th year of assuring food security.
To galvanize on the assurance, Banluta used the stir to catapult a plea for Boholano farmers to se their harvests to NFA, which buys their palay at P17.00 or at P17.70 per kilo with premiums for delivered, dried and cooperative member farmer sellers.
The palays also end up milled and stocked at NFA store houses to form part of the local inventory. The same could be mixed with iron fortificants as the government has been into iron supplementation relative to existing laws, according to Jhoel Lim.
These become part of the NFA rice fortification program where the mineral requirement of Filipinos is responded by the I-Rice (Iron fortified), he explained.
The iron fortified rice displays some yellow rice streaks in the pack, please do not sort the yellowish grains out, these are the iron fortified rice that enhances the mineral in your cooked rice, Lim suggests.