Palay prices keep falling
The value of palay has kept falling amid the harvest season, a data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed.
During the fourth week of October, the average farm-gate price of palay declined by 24.2 percent from its level of P20.36 per kilogram (/kg) in the same week of the previous year to P15.43/kg.
The other day, Senator Francis Pangilinan said the decline in the price of palay already resulted in nearly P62 billion worth of losses for the farmers. This, as rice imports flood the local market.
“Since August, when we have anticipated the misery that would befall our farmers, we have proposed immediate government response. Now, three months hence, news reports are validating our calculations: farmers have lost at least P61.77 billion due to the continuous drop in farmgate price of palay,” Pangilinan said in an earlier report.
“The wife of a farmer in Nueva Ecija that my staff interviewed in August now works as a domestic helper in Metro Manila. Imagine the hardship and sacrifice she endures — a mother who left her children to care for themselves so she could augment the further-reduced family income caused by the flood of rice imports,” he further said.
He told the government to act on this matter immediately and call for the review of the Rice Tariffication Law, which allowed the unimpeded rice importation in the country.