The National Food Authority (NFA) quickly released 200 bags of NFA rice requested by the Local Government of Surigao del Norte for its relief operations after the 6.7 magnitude earthquake hit the province on February 10.

“It is one of the mandates of NFA to provide rice to a calamity-stricken area within 23 hours from the occurrence of a calamity or emergency,” NFA Administrator Jason Laureano Y. Aquino said.

The NFA has a standing Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with various relief agencies. Under the MOA, LGUs can withdraw rice from NFA anytime during calamities and emergencies.

The NFA Regional Office in CARAGA is also coordinating with other local government units, Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (RDRRMC), and other relief agencies for further issuance of rice for distribution to affected families and those in the evacuation centers. 

Aquino assured that NFA has enough rice stock in the region with more than 232,000 bags of rice strategically positioned in its warehouses in CARAGA, sufficient to supply the rice consumption requirements of the region for more than two weeks. NFA also has sufficient rice inventory nationwide at 8,881,612 bags as of February 10, 2017.

After the quake, NFA market monitoring teams were immediately deployed to assess the rice supply and price situation in the market. The teams were also instructed to inspect NFA accredited rice retail outlets to ensure that affordable government rice is readily available and accessible to the consuming public especially those in affected areas in the region.

Based on the reports of the NFA monitoring teams, prevailing market price of commercial rice remains stable in spite of the declaration of Surigao City under state of calamity.                                    

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cad 2-13-17

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