The National Food Authority is on a massive market monitoring nationwide to ensure the continued availability and affordability of rice during the lean months.
NFA Officer in Charge Tomas R. Escarez has instructed the agency's regional directors to strictly conduct regular monitoring of rice prices and supply in the market. "We must ensure that NFA rice is always available, especially during this season of low harvest," Escarez said. The lean months are July, August, and September.
"If they don't find NFA rice on display in the markets, we ask the public to immediately report this to NFA's hotline number 0906-4363133. We will send our people to the area immediately and penalize those who will be found violating our policies," OIC Escarez warned. NFA rice is being sold nationwide at P27 and P32 per kilogram of regular and well-milled variety.
Meanwhile, Escarez guaranteed NFA's role during emergencies or calamities. "We have memorandum of agreements (MoA) on rice sales with local government units (LGUs) and other relief agencies so they can buy rice from us during disasters," Escarez said. As part of the food agency's disaster-preparedness measures, the NFA activates its Operations Center (OpCen) in areas where calamities or disasters are happening to immediately answer the rice requirements of partner relief agencies and LGUs. The OpCen is operated 24/7.
On procurement, OIC Escarez reported that the NFA holds regular meetings (ugnayans) with farmers to encourage them to sell their palay to NFA. "Our buying price is set at P17 per kilogram plus incentives to both individual and farmer cooperatives," Escarez said. The NFA offers incentives amounting to a total of P0.70 covering Cooperative Development Incentive Fee (CDIF) - P0.30, Drying Fee - P0.20, and Delivery Fee - P0.20.
For inquiries, complaints and other concerns, please text the NFA hotline number 0906-4363133.
Source: Philippine Information Agency