NFA releases 437 sacks of rice for Batanes quake victims

MANILA The National Food Authority (NFA) has released a total of 437 bags of rice in support of ongoing relief operations for the earthquake victims in Itbayat, Batanes.

NFA Administrator Judy Carol Dansal in a statement on Thursday assured that the agency has enough rice stocks in the province and could release more if needed.

We will continue to monitor the situation and coordinate with DSWD (Department of Social Welfare and Development), LGUs (local government units), and other agencies to ensure that we will be able to provide the necessary rice supply for the relief operations, until the situation in the province is back to normal, she said.

The island municipality of Itbayat is the northernmost municipality of the country. It suffered the most casualties after twin earthquakes struck Batanes early Saturday morning (July 27), leaving at least nine people dead and dozens injured while causing damage to homes and structures.

Dansal said NFA now holds more than 10 million bags of rice stored in all of its warehouses nationwide for food security buffer stock ready to be released through relief agencies and LGUs for calamities and emergencies.

NFA was able to procure 5.69 million bags of palay from local farmers already this year to bolster our buffer stock so we do not have to worry about availability of NFA rice for now, especially for relief operations because it is now the focus of our agency, she said.

The NFA chief also noted that the agency has standing memorandum of agreements with various relief agencies like the DSWD, Office of Civil Defense, and LGUs which allow them to withdraw rice on credit from the food agency for their relief operations anytime during calamities and emergencies. (PR)

Source: Philippines News Agency

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