Department of Agriculture (DA) Secretary William Dar said Monday they have recorded some P1.1 billion worth of agricultural damage and losses due to the onslaught by Super Typhoon Rolly.
In a press briefing with the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) on Monday, Dar said the DA released early advisories to farmers whose farmlands were on the path of “Rolly.”
“At least 242,000 hectares of rice in Regions 1 (Ilocos), 2 (Cagayan), 3 (Central Luzon), 4A (Calabarzon), and 5 (Bicol Region) and 11,000 hectares of corn in Regions 1, 2, 5, and 8 (Eastern Visayas) were provided notice of forecasts from the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) of the incoming super typhoon,” he said.
The rice plantations have an equivalent production of over ONE million metric tons which is worth P16.9 billion while corn plantations have an equivalent production of 45,703 metric tons worth P579 million pesos, he added.
Dar said they have coordinated with concerned national government agencies, local government units, and other DRRM-related offices for available resources for intervention and assistance, and have tapped several water management related agencies for flood risk monitoring and dam water release.
Dar said they have ongoing close monitoring procedures for validation of agricultural damages and losses that may have been incurred in the sector. Earlier, Typhoon Quinta left almost P2 billion agricultural damage, he added.
DA, meanwhile, assured affected farmers and fisherfolk of recovery assistance. This includes 133,000 bags of rice seeds and 17,545 bags of corn seeds for replanting.
Bicol, Calabarzon and Mimaropa regions, as well as Siquijor and Northern Samar, will also avail of some 2,000 kilograms of assorted vegetables.
For the livestock and poultry industry, DA said it will also shoulder the distribution costs of medicines and biologics, and provide small ruminants and native chickens to those who were heavily affected by the calamity.
For the fisheries sector, DA is reportedly readying some 10 million pieces of tilapia and milkfish fingerlings as well as fishing gears and paraphernalia for distribution.
Presently, DA’s Quick Response Fund has P400 million for the rehabilitation of the affected areas in the various regions that were destroyed by the last two typhoons.
“We also have survival and recovery loan programs to be given at P25,000 per farmer who is affected, zero interest and payable in 10 years,” he added.
Dar also reported that the Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) also has a P1-billion budget to pay for the losses incurred.