DA-8 to raise rice sufficiency index in Eastern Visayas in the next 4 years
TACLOBAN CITY – The Department of Agriculture (DA) is targeting to raise the rice self sufficiency index in Eastern Visayas in the next four years to cope with growing population and increasing per capita consumption.
In a media briefing, Rufino Ayaso, chief of the department’s operation division and regional rice program coordinator said that the region is currently 97% sufficient in rice based on the 2010 population and the goal is to rise to 117% in 2016.
“We used to be self sufficient before but looking at the 2010 data, the population has grown and the volume that every single individual consumes went up from 113.10 kilograms annually in 2008 to 2009 to 127.24 kilograms between 2010 to 2016,” Ayaso told reporters.
The target will fit the production momentum to the growing demand for staple food in the next four years. The National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) projects a population growth of 1.82% from 2012 –2014 to 1.64% from 2015 to 2016.
The farm department is eyeing a production of 1,294,977 metric tons (mt) in 2016 from 964,145 mt in 2010. The agency expects an output increase of 310,961 mt between 2011 and 2016 or an average yield growth of 5.11% annually.
“Our strategy to raise productivity and competitiveness by accelerate expansion of irrigation services, ensure adoption of suitable high quality seeds and integrated crop management practices, sustain research and development in new varieties and crop management, promote mechanization of on-farm and postharvest operations, enhance delivery of extension services, boost yield growth in rain fed areas, and harness potential of upland rice areas,” Ayaso explained.
From January to June 2012, final production estimate by the Bureau of Agriculture Statistics is pegged at 514,788 mt. For the entire year, BAS forecasted a 986,726 mt output or 0.28 higher than last year.
The forecast, however, is lower than the 1,014,122 mt target for the year. The goal next year is 1,151,629 mt. (Sarwell Q. Meniano)
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