“The agency is strictly monitoring and ensuring the availability of NFA rice in all public markets in the Province, ako mismo umiikot sa palengke para makita ko ang mga stalls, pero sagana ang bigas natin sa Bataan,” NFA-Bataan Manager Adelaida Nuestro told this writer in an interview.
She said that even the CIDG here headed by Chief Inspector Rommel Labalan has also been monitoring the supply and possible hoarding of rice “but I told them that there is no report of hoarding and increase of NFA prices.”
NFA rice is presently sold at P27 per kilo for regular milled rice (25% broken) and P32 per kilo for well-milled rice (15% broken). Nuestro also expressed delight on the higher price of palay which benefited thousands of farmers in the province.
Information Officer Coco Reyes told newsmen that palay is sold at P19 to P22 per kilo, giving farmers a chance to finally recoup the losses they accrued during previous harvest seasons, wherein palay was sold at P15 to P18 per kilo.
“The National Food Authority admits that this increase in the price of palay, although beneficial to local farmers, results in higher price of rice in the market,” said Reyes. Farmers across Bataan rejoiced over this high value of palay which is a far cry from previous years that saw thousands of farmlands battered by successive storms.