BACOLOD CITY, Oct. 22 (PIA)-The National Food Authority (NFA) here is expecting to buy from 35,000 to 40,000 bags of palay in Negros Occidental until the end of the year.
"Buying at P19 per kilogram, NFA has already purchased about 27,000 bags from farmers since September this year and the office still has money to buy all produce coming in," Provincial Manager Frisco Canoy said.
He noted they have already exceeded the target of 12,000 bags of palay by about 200 percent.
He clarified that NFA is buying clean and dry palay with the stock intended for food security that will be released only during calamities or emergencies.
He said the remaining 6,000 bags of NFA rice in its warehouse will be sold by this month as directed by their higher office.
Buying palay, he said, is a year-round activity through the agency's three buying centers located in San Carlos City in the north, Ilog in the south and at NFA's main office in Bacolod City.
Canoy said they do not expect big volume of palay here because Negros Occidental is a perennially rice deficit area. Although the province produces big harvest, its population also consumes large volume of rice, he added.
According to him, the farmers are currently going through a transition period after the government allowed imported rice to compete with locally produced ones.
To aid the farmers, the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF) was set in place, he said. (JBG/Lljr-PIA6)