Typhoon ‘Karen’ damage to agricultural crops hits P3B
Typhoon “Karen” racked up a bill of about P3 billion in farm damage, almost the entirety of which was on rice crops.
Monitoring by the Department of Agriculture’s field operations unit shows that as of Tuesday morning, 205,870 tons of palay worth P2.8 billion was lost to Karen.
Affected were 80,923 farmers working on 254,248 hectares of rice fields in the Cordilleras, Ilocandia, Central Luzon, Calabarzon and Bicol.
The typhoon also ravaged P106.4 million worth of high-value crops like vegetables, and P60.3 million worth of corn.
Meanwhile, Cabinet Secretary Leoncio Evasco Jr. commended the quick response of the National Food Authority (NFA) to disasters and emergencies.
Evasco noted the NFA’s role during the flash floods that hit the regions of Ilocos and Central Luzon, when the agency quickly distributed rice through the local governments in Pampanga, Tarlac, Pangasinan, Ilocos Sur and Abra.
Earlier, the NFA earmarked an initial fund of P2.3 billion for an “extensive” drive to buy palay directly from farmers as the harvest of the year’s main crop neared.
NFA officer in charge Tomas R. Escarez said the agency was “ready” to secure additional financing for its Cereal Procurement Fund.
Escarez said the agency hoped to buy 2.6 million bags of palay during the remainder of this year.