Cabinet Secretary Leoncio Evasco Jr. hailed the National Food Authority's quick response to disasters and emergencies during the agency's 44th anniversary celebration in Bohol at the Metrocenter Hotel recently.
According to Evasco, the NFA maintains close coordination with local government units (LGUs) and relief agencies so they can respond immediately to the rice requirement of certain areas in emergency situations.
He underscored NFA's role during the flash floods that hit regions 1 and 3 when the food agency quickly responded by issuing rice thru the LGUs in Pampanga, Tarlac, Western Pangasinan, Ilocos Sur, and Abra.
Evasco lauded NFA officials and employees in his speech saying he hopes they will "continue to exercise the same sensitivity to the vulnerable communities in the country." He acknowledged NFA's efforts in shipping 500,000 bags of rice to the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) to position stocks particularly in areas affected by the ongoing military operations against the Abu Sayyaf.
Meanwhile, with the onset of the harvest season, the NFA has intensified its palay procurement operations nationwide. NFA Officer-in-Charge Tomas R. Escarez said the food agency has earmarked some P2.3 billion for this operation as it targets to buy 2.6 million bags from local farmers. The NFA buys palay at P17 per kilogram with these additional incentives: Cooperative Development Incentive Fee (CDIF) P0.30; Drying Fee, P0.20; and a Delivery Fee of P0.20.
Secretary Evasco heads a cluster of 12 agencies, including NFA that is tasked to "evaluate existing poverty reduction programs and, if deemed necessary, formulate a more responsive set of programs complementing existing ones, channeling resources as necessary to reduce both the incidence and magnitude of poverty."
Source: Philippine Information Agency