The National Food Authority provincial office reported yesterday that Negros Occidental has only 10,000 bags of NFA rice this month and this is expected to continually decline in the coming weeks.
Amid this continuous decline, provincial director Marianito Bejemino said yesterday that commercial rice supply in Negros Occidental is still sufficient with 1.3 million bags, which is good for 62 days.
Of the 1.3 million bags, 800,000 are for retail, while 500,000 are for household consumption.
He said the modal price of commercial rice is P39 per kilo for regular milled and P44 for well-milled.
“There is no shortage of rice according to our inventory. Negrenses have nothing to worry about,” he said.
In an interview, he said that selling of regular milled NFA rice is still ongoing, but if the supply declines to 4,000 to 5,000 bags, they will allocate it for emergency situations, like calamities and disasters.
“When we reach the 5,000 bags mark, we will stock the supply only for emergency purposes,” he said, adding that when this situation takes place, no selling of NFA rice will occur until imported supply is given by the central office by June.
Bejemino reported that the current volume of supply is much lower compared to previous years. In the same period in 2017, NFA rice was estimated at 100,000.
Of the NFA rice stocks in the province, all are only regular-milled as well-milled NFA rice is already unavailable.
Despite the low supply of NFA rice, Bejemino said that its price is still P27 per kilo.
He said that the next supply of NFA rice may come in early June this year as the bidding for rice imports will still be conducted in the coming weeks.
Usual bidders are rice importers from Vietnam, Thailand, India, and sometimes China, he said.
He also said they will wait for the central office to supply them with NFA rice until the bidding and importation of supply is done.*MLG
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