Eastern Visayas Q1 Rice Output Up by 6.7%
Rice production in Eastern Visayas has increased by 6.7 percent in the first three months of 2021 compared to the same period in 2020 largely due to the expansion of areas devoted to the production of staple food, the Philippine Statistics Authority reported on Wednesday.
From January to March 2021, output of palay (unhusked rice) rose to 269,853 metric tons (MT) from 252,869 MT in the first quarter of 2020.
This is attributed to a significant 10.5 percent expansion in the total area harvested for rice from 75,600 hectares in late 2020 to 83,522 hectares in early 2021, according to the PSA.
Reached for comment, Department of Agriculture (DA) regional executive director Angel Enriquez said the massive intervention for rice productivity under the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act and Bayanihan to Recover as One Act have contributed significantly to better harvest this year.
“There was an additional allocation for the provision of rice seeds and fertilizer. These are the two factors that motivated our farmers to plant. We also distributed more farm machinery since last year,” Enriquez told the Philippine News Agency (PNA).
The DA in the region got PHP574.4 million pandemic response funds meant to help farmers cope with the effects of the health crisis. A big chunk of the outlay was used to enhance local rice production.
The PSA report also pointed out that the hefty production hike was due to the increase of output in Northern Samar by 73.5 percent during the first three months when its rice farms yielded 40,228 MT of palay. The province contributed 14.9 percent to the regional harvest.
Leyte province contributed the biggest share in rice yield in Eastern Visayas at 139,207 MT during the period, comprising more than half or 51.6 percent of the total palay production in the region.
Samar came next with 52,865 MT production, accounting for 19.6 percent of the region’s total.
Eastern Samar and Southern Leyte registered a 7.2 percent (19,377 MT) and 4.7 percent (12,600 MT) shares, respectively. Biliran had the least contribution at 2.1 percent (5,576 MT) of the region’s total.
Eastern Visayas is an agricultural area with 45 percent or 976,415 ha of its total land area devoted to agriculture, according to DA.
Of its agricultural lands, 70 percent is devoted to coconut plantation and 20 percent is planted with rice and corn. The remaining land is planted with other crops, used to raise livestock and poultry, or produce inland fishery products.
Source from: Sarwell Meniano(2021). Eastern Visayas Q1 Rice Output Up by 6.7%. Retrieved from: Philippine News Agency (June 23, 2021). https://www.pna.gov.ph/articles/1144627