Sec. Piñol: Record Philippine Rice Harvest Reaches 19.4 Million Metric Tons in 2017

Secretary Manny Piñol of the Department of Agriculture reported that the Philippines hit a record high in rice production as the country's rice harvest reached 19.4-million metric tons in 2017.



The long dreamed rice sufficiency of the Philippines is indeed achievable with the with aid of favorable climate and intensified campaign for the use of outstanding seeds and modern technology.

According to Sec. Piñol the record harvest means that the Philippines will just be short of 600,000 metric tons to reach the targetted 20-million metric tons needed to be able to feed the whole country without depending on rice importation.

During the time of the late President Ferdinand Marcos, the Philippines was rice sufficient but it was not sustained during the succeeding administration.

Here's the Complete Report of Sec. Manny Piñol:

Right on track
RECORD PH RICE HARVEST 
OF 19.4-MILLION MT IN 2017
By Manny Piñol

Aided by favorable climate and the intensified campaign for the use of outstanding seeds and modern technology, the country will see a record rice harvest of about 19.4-million metric tons for 2017, bringing it closer to the long dreamed sufficiency.

The record harvest means that the Philippines will just be short of 600,000 metric tons to reach the targetted 20-million metric tons needed to be able to feed the whole country without depending on rice importation.

The Philippines during the time of President Ferdinand Marcos was rice sufficient for a brief period of time but this was not sustained.

Until recently, the country imported about 1.8-million metric tons of rice but the shortage fell to only 500,000 metric tons in the administration of Pres. Rody Duterte.

The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), in its report on the 3rd Quarter performance of the Agriculture Sector, said that rice production grew by 14.7%.

Reports from the DA Regional Offices indicate that the 4th Quarter harvest will even be better than the 3rd Quarter because of favorable climate with beneficial typhoons bringing in needed rains.

The rains have allowed rain-fed rice areas, which traditionally plant rice only once a year, to have a second cropping.

The improved performance of the rice sector is also attributed to the increasing openness of farmers to the use of modern technology, including hybrid seeds and mechanization.

The use of hybrid seeds developed by both private agricultural companies and the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) boosted rice productivity.

Nueva Ecija rice farmers using hybrid seeds post harvests of 10-metric tons or even better, higher than the national average of 4.38-metric tons per hectare per harvest.

Of the 4.9-million hectares harvested area for rice, only 360,000 hectares are planted to hybrid seeds.

The DA has set a target of 1-million hectares to be planted to hybrid seeds by 2020 with a modest production goal of 6-metric tons per hectare.

This is expected to result in an additional annual production of 4-million metric tons at two harvests a year which would be over and beyond the 600,000 metric ton deficit.

The hybridization program of the Agriculture Department is not without controversies with a few groups claiming that Hybrid Seeds are GMOs and that officials of the Department are making money by promoting Hybrid Seeds.

In spite of explanations that Hybrid Rice seeds are simply results of crossbreeding of two rice varieties with outstanding qualities and that the Department encourages farmers to choose their hybrid seeds - and there is a dozen or more public and private hybrids to choose from - these groups have continued to discredit the program.

The Department of Agriculture, however, will not be deterred and will pursue the program with a clear conscience guided by the vision of President Rody Duterte to provide Available and Affordable Food for the Filipinos.

#Changeishere! #AvailableAffrodableFood!

Source: Sec. Manny's Facebook Page

Sec. Piñol: Record Philippine Rice Harvest Reaches 19.4 Million Metric Tons in 2017 Sec. Piñol: Record Philippine Rice Harvest Reaches 19.4 Million Metric Tons in 2017 Reviewed by Phil Newsome on November 24, 2017 Rating: 5
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