DA allots P6B for farmers, fishers affected by typhoons

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The Department of Agriculture (DA) has allotted more than P6 billion worth of assistance
to farmers and fishers who were severely affected by the onslaught of typhoons “Quinta,”
“Rolly” and “Ulysses.” Of the total amount, P2.2 billion has been allocated as assistance to Cagayan Valley (Region 2) farmers.

Agriculture Secretary William Dar said the amount should have been given to farmers in
the region before Ulysses struck the country, to also help rice farmers in the region to start
the dry-season rice farming in November to December.

“Tamang-tama po ‘yung paghahanda po namin for dry season planting. Ito na sana
Nobyembre, last two weeks at hangga’t Disyembre. Mabuti na lang hindi po namin pa
naibigay po lahat doon sa mga probinsiya (We were just about to distribute our assistance
to them [before Ulysses hit].

Hopefully [there’s no more weather disturbance] as we are to
release aid on the last two weeks of November to December, in time for the dry season),”
he said.

Of the P2.2 billion, Cagayan province will get P846 million while Isabela will receive
P986 million. Both provinces are major rice and corn producers.

So far, the DA has placed the damage caused by the three typhoons at P10 billion. Crop
losses to Isabela and Cagayan have yet to be tallied.

“Hindi pa kasama ngayon iyong flooding na nangyayari sa Isabela at Cagayan ay
umaabot na po ng P10 bilyon at alam natin naman na talagang apektado at talagang
malaking dagok na naman dito sa food security natin (The damage does not include the
damage from the flooding in Isabela and Cagayan that has reached P10 billion and we
already know this will affect and be a big blow to our food security situation),” Dar had
said.

However, the Agriculture secretary assured the country has enough rice stocks or 85 to 94
days.

He added the early advisories the DA issued to farmers before the Quinta and Rolly made
landfall resulted in about P26.53-billion worth of crops being saved from destruction.
CURRENTPH

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