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Palay production tops 20 million MT in 2023

PHILIPPINE STAR/BOY SANTOS

PRODUCTION of palay or unmilled rice was 20.06 million metric tons (MT) in 2023, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

The PSA said production increased by 1.53% from a year earlier and exceeds the 20 million MT target set by the Department of Agriculture (DA).

The DA’s target was unchanged from a year earlier and accounted for the possible impact of El Niño on agriculture.

The government weather service, known as PAGASA (Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration), said that the most intense phase of El Niño may run until the second quarter, bringing dry spells and drought to 63 provinces.

It added that the harvest from irrigated areas was 15.28 million MT, while rainfed palay production was 4.78 million MT for 2023.

The region with the highest palay production was Central Luzon with 3.64 million MT, followed by the Cagayan Valley with 3.03 million MT and the Western Visayas with 2.26 million MT.

In a separate report, the PSA said the rice inventory at the beginning of December declined 25.2% year on year to 1.9 million MT.

A sharp fall in stocks held by the National Food Authority (NFA) drove the decline in inventory for the period.

NFA rice holdings fell 54.4% year on year to 57.13 thousand MT, while household rice stocks fell 33.2% to 987.78 thousand MT. 

Rice held by commercial establishments dropped 8.7% to 851.88 thousand MT.

On a month-on-month basis, the December rice inventory fell 4.2% from 1.98 million MT previously.

“Month-on-month decreases were noted in rice inventories in the commercial sector by 5.5%, NFA depositories by 5.1%, and in the household sector by 3%,” it added. — Adrian H. Halili

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