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Unfazed by budget cut, NFA to buy more rice from farmers


Its P5.5-billion budget cut this year has not stopped the National Food Authority (NFA) from planning to buy from farmers more rice in 2011 than the target it set in the previous year.

With NFA’s budget down to P2.5 billion from P8 billion in 2010, NFA administrator Lito Banayo over the weekend said the agency targets to buy as much as 870,000 metric tons (MT) of palay or unmilled rice from farmers.

The NFA buys unmilled rice from farmers at P17 — which, Banayo told GMA News on Tuesday, is way above the break-even price of P10.50 — to keep the abusive private sector at bay.

For 2010, the NFA planned to buy less at 612,000 MT, according to a report in September that year. 

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Food alliance welcomes NFA plan to buy more local rice

Posted date: February 15, 2011

MANILA, Philippines—An alliance of food security advocates welcomed the announcement of National Food Authority (NFA) to buy more locally-produced palay even as it urged the agency to increase its farm gate prices.

The Task Force Food Sovereignty (TFFS) on Tuesday said that small rice farmers badly need a good price for their harvest following a series of calamities that hit the country’s agriculture sector.

NFA administrator Lito Banayo on Monday said the state grain agency intends to buy at least five percent of the country’s total rice stock this year from local farmers.

TFFS member Ed Mora of the Pambansang Kaisahan ng Magbubukid sa Pilipinas said that most farmers have given up hope that NFA will buy palay on time and at a better price because the agency’s palay procurement has, historically, been “too little, too late.”

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