Palay, corn harvest forecast lowered again
Government has again lowered its forecast on palay and corn harvests for the year, blaming the severe dry spell and pest infestation.
“Based on standing crops as of March 1, 2016, palay and corn production forecasts for the January-March 2016 would be lower compared with the January 2016 Round forecasts,” the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics said.
“The probable decrease in production could be due to insufficient water supply and intense heat brought about by El Nino effects and, the adverse effects of typhoon Nona on standing crop last December 2015. Infestation of rats,
rice black bugs and birds and; movement of harvests to second quarter may result to production decrease,” the BAS added.
The forecast for palay production in the first quarter was lowered by 3.3 percent to 4.01 million metric tons from the earlier projection of 4.15 million tons.
Corn production forecast was brought down by 6.3 percent to 2.1 million tons from an earlier forecast of 2.21 million tons.
In the provinces of Iloilo, Zamboanga Sibugay, Palawan, North Cotabato, Capiz, South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Negros Occidental, Bohol, Bukidnon, Zamboanga Norte, Samar, Zambales, Antique, Negros Oriental, Quezon, Aklan, and Guimaras, water supply was insufficient and standing harvests of palay were subjected to intense heat during their productive and maturing stages and negatively affected yield.
In Bukidnon, North Cotabato, South Cotabato, Ifugao, Iloilo, Sultan Kudarat, Sarangani, Negros Occidental, Negros Oriental, Quirino, Zamboanga Sibugay, and Capiz, corn yields dropped because El Nino which meant there was not enough water for the crops.
In Bukidnon and Sultan Kudarat, rat infestation made it even worse.
In Tarlac, not enough fertilizers were applied. In Isabela and Aurora, the effects of typhoon Nona negatively affected production. (Eileen A. Mencias)