The National Food Authority (NFA) has temporarily stopped its distribution of subsidized rice varieties in Bohol as the agency awaits a new shipment of rice supply from the National Capital Region (NCR).
NFA Bohol administrator Fe Evasco clarified that the rice tarrification law abolishes the NFA’s role of selling subsidized rice but President Duterte has ordered the agency to sell its remaining stock of 3.6 million sacks of rice.
The absence of NFA rice in the market is expected to be addressed within the month as around 50,000 bags are to be shipped to the province—30,000 for Tagbilaran City and 20,000 for Ubay.
Evasco explained that the delay in shipment was due to logistics issues caused by the recent enactment of the rice tariffication measure.
“Pag take effect sa RA 11203, we were not supposed to intervene in the market,” she said.
According to Evasco, a total of 190,000 more bags of rice are expected to arrive in the province from September until December.
“50,000 bags will be imported and the rest ang local rice variety nato which would come from Region IV about 140,000,” said Evasco.
However, the current shortage of NFA rice in Bohol could already be a glimpse of the future.
After the remaining supply of subsidized rice varieties are depleted, the agency is expected to be relegated to keeping buffer stock for emergency purposes and buying un-milled rice from farmers.
Evasco said that proceeds from the sale of the remaining stocks will be used to procure palay. (R. Tutas)