AGRI DAMAGE. The rice fields in the towns of Bangui and Pagudpud in Ilocos Norte after they were submerged in floodwaters for the past two days. The Office of the Provincial Agriculturist on Friday (Nov. 13, 2020) reported that the typhoon caused an initial PHP2.5 million in damage to paddy rice alone. (Photo courtesy of Norma Lagmay)
MANILA – The Department of Agriculture (DA) said losses brought about by Typhoon Ulysses have totaled PHP969.8 million affecting 40,519 farmers and 51,241 hectares of agricultural areas.
In a statement on Friday, the DA said the typhoon damaged croplands in the Cordillera Autonomous Region, Ilocos Region, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, and the Bicol Region.
“This includes commodities such as rice, corn, high-value crops, fisheries, and livestock,” it said, adding that its total production loss is already at 58,897 metric tons (MT) as of 4:00 p.m. Friday.
Losses were also reported among irrigation facilities, fisheries facilities, and equipment.
The increase in total value was attributed to additional reports from Ilocos Region and Cagayan Valley, as well as updated reports from Central Luzon, CALABARZON, and Bicol Region.
Earlier today, Agriculture Secretary William Dar personally visited affected farmers in Pulilan and Malolos, Bulacan.
He distributed some PHP176 million worth of rice seeds and fertilizers to Bulakeño farmers.
The DA said it is coordinating with affected local government units and other disaster risk reduction management-related offices to facilitate the appropriate interventions and assistance.
“This includes water management-related agencies for flood risk monitoring and dam water release,” it said.
The DA Regional Offices are also distributing rice, corn, and assorted vegetable seeds, it added.
This, along with drugs and biologics for livestock and poultry farms.
In earlier news, the DA urged farmers affected by Typhoons Quinta and Rolly to avail of their Survival and Recovery (SURE) loan program under the Agricultural Credit Policy Council (ACPC).
DA Director Roy Abaya explained to Philippine News Agency this will grant the victims with PHP25,000 from their Survival and Recovery (SURE) loan program.
The amount is broken down to PHP5,000 for emergency and PHP20,000 for recovery.
It will be provided with zero interest and no collateral payable in 10 years, Abaya added.
The affected farmers may also seek assistance from the Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC).
The DA is currently doing fieldwork to assess the total damage and losses incurred by “Ulysses” in agriculture. (PNA)