NFA intensifies procurement

THE National Food Authority will aggressively buy palay from local farmers as the agency veers away from importation and focus on local procurement for its food security buffer stock.

NFA Officer-in-Charge Ludovico J. Jarina has instructed the agency’s provincial managers to exert all efforts to meet their respective targets as the agency targets to buy some 13.4 million bags from their year’s harvest.

As of October 31, the NFA had been able to procure a total of 5.25 million bags of palay at its various buying stations nationwide. The top three regions where the agency registered the highest procurement record are the Southern Tagalog, Central Luzon and Cagayan Valley, respectively.

The NFA is taking necessary steps to encourage more farmers to sell their produce by implementing new procurement strategies such as lending empty sacks (MTS) to farmer organizations using their Cooperative Development Incentive Fund (CDIF); opening buying stations in far-flung areas where NFA’s chance of being able to buy is greater; coordinating with the Municipal Agriculture Office (MAO) and surveying areas where harvesting is on-going; and deploying mobile procurement teams especially in areas where ex-farm prices are low.

NFA buys clean and dry palay at P17 per kilogram with additional incentives such as delivery fee of maximum P0.50/kg; drying incentive fee of P0.20/kg; and cooperative development incentive fee (CDIF) of P0.30 /kg.

Since April this year, the NFA has intensified its palay buying operations and simplified the requirements for selling palay to the agency so that it could serve palay farmers more efficiently. Individual farmers will simply submit a certification from the barangay captain, MAO, National Irrigation Administration (NIA) or Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) indicating the hectarage planted to palay and yield per hectare and whether the area cultivated is irrigated or not.

Meanwhile, farmers’ cooperatives/associations or organizations only need to submit registration certificates from the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA) or Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) or any registration certificate from concerned government agencies. They should also submit a list of farmer-members certified by the LGU-MAO, whichever is applicable, indicating hectarage whether irrigated or not and the yield per hectare.

Farmer applicants are issued farmer’s/master’s passbook free of charge. Farmers can go directly to NFA provincial offices or NFA satellite buying stations near their area. In areas that are hard to reach, the NFA deploys mobile procurement teams.

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