Three cities in Negros Occidental reported damage on rice areas estimated at P6.3 million due to tropical storm Basyang that hit the province Tuesday and Wednesday.
Records from the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist show that, as of yesterday, the cities of San Carlos, Cadiz, andBago reported rice crop damage worth P6,319,232 covering 615.25 hectares of 541 farmers in the two days that the typhoon hit Negros.
Bago, that has the biggest rice area in Negros Occidental, incurred the highest rice damage at P4,254,900 covering 411.40 has. of 338 farmers from 19 out of 24 barangays of the city.
Last month, the city has also incurred the highest crop damage of P14,229,144, covering 583.55 hectares, and affecting 337 farmers from 15 barangays during typhoon Agaton.
Basyang also damaged rice areas in San Carlos, with estimated losses of P1,890,300, covering 176.25 has.,and owned by 175 farmers from five barangays, while Cadiz City in north Negros incurred P174,032 worth of damages covering 27.60 has. of 28 farmers from two barangays.
Provincial Agriculturist JaphetMasculino, in an interview yesterday, said they are still waiting for other local government units to submit reports of any damage recorded in their areas.
However, the damage brought by Basyang in rice can no longer be recovered as most of the crops affected were in their maturity stage, as the third cropping season is ending, Masculino said.
They are now verifying if the affected farmers were enrolled in the crop insurance program under the Negros First Universal Crop Insurance Program or in the Philippine Crop Insurance Program, he added.
Since January, OPA has recorded P27.7 million worth of rice damage due to typhoons and floods that hit Negros, but Masculino assured it will only have a “minimal” effect on the rice sufficiency of the province.
He said that in 2017, the rice sufficiency in the province was about 94 to 96 percent. They are still finalizing the record, he added.
Masculino also said that farmers should also brace for the coming rains and flooding in the province due to the La Niña episode this year, and should be vigilant to whatever weather disturbancesthat may come.* MLG
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