The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) projects increases in the production of rice and corn, the country’s main staples, in the first half of this year.
In its Rice and Corn Situation Outlook- January round, the PSA said that production of palay and corn crops for the January to June 2017 period may increase by 11.68 percent and 29.92 percent, respectively, compared to the 2016 levels.
In the statement released over the weekend, the PSA said this projection was based on observed movement of cropping and higher yield.
However, the PSA also cautioned it is also important to note that palay and corn were coming from a relatively low base in the first half of 2016, at the height of the El Niño episode in the country.
Based on standing crop and planting intentions of 2.08 million hectares, the January-June 2017 probable production may reach 8.54 million MT, 11.68 percent higher from the previous year’s output of 7.65 million MT.
Harvest area may expand by 7.62 percent from 1.93 million hectares in 2016. Moreover, yield may escalate to 4.11 MT per hectare from the previous year’s level at 3.96 MT per hectare or by 3.77 percent.
Based on standing crop, probable production in January-March 2017 may increase to 4.53 million MT, 15.22 percent above the 3.93 million MT output in 2016.
Harvest area, from January-March, may expand to 1.16 million hectares from the 1.08 million hectares in 2016. Likewise, yield may rise from 3.64 MT per hectare in 2016 to 3.92 MT per hectare.
“Probable increments in production are foreseen in all regions except CALABARZON. These may be attributed to increase in harvest area and better yield due to adequate supply of water during plant growth and more farmers using high yielding variety seeds,” the PSA said.
Based on farmers’ planting intentions, the April-June 2017 production and harvest area may surpass the 2016 level at 3.71 million MT and 0.85 million hectares or by 7.94 percent and 8.43 percent, respectively. However, yield may be lesser by 0.45 percent from the previous year’s level of 4.38 MT per hectare.
“Probable increases in harvest area are expected in the Visayas and Mindanao regions after the previous year’s drought/dry spell. Most of the farmers also foresee good weather that may result in more plantings during this cropping period,” it added.
For corn, the January-June 2017 probable production may reach to 3.67 million MT, 29.92 percent higher than the 2.83 million MT output in 2016 based on standing crop and planting intentions.
Harvest area may expand by 21.33 percent from 0.90 million hectares in 2016 to 1.09 million hectares in 2017. Moreover, yield may improve from 3.14 MT per hectare to 3.36 MT per hectare, or by 7.08 percent.
Based on standing crop, probable production in January- March 2017 will be 2.40 million MT, 24.98 percent above the 1.92 million MT output in 2016. Harvest area may be larger from 0.63 million hectares in 2016 to 0.70 million hectares in 2017, or by 11.35 percent. Yield may go up from 3.05 MT per hectare to 3.42 MT per hectare, or by 12.23 percent.
Probable increases in production are anticipated in all regions except in Central Luzon, MIMAROPA, Eastern Visayas, Zamboanga Peninsula and Caraga. Harvest area may increase due to more plantings in Northern Mindanao, Davao Region and SOCCSKSARGEN in anticipation of sufficient rains favorable for plantings; movement of cropping to this quarter in SOCCSKSARGEN and ARMM; and seed support/assistance from DA/LGUs in Northern Mindanao, Davao Region and SOCCSKSARGEN.
“Yield may escalate due to usage of high yielding variety seeds and more plantings of yellow corn in the Ilocos Region. Likewise, farmers in Northern Mindanao and SOCCSKSARGEN are anticipating sufficient rainfall during the developing stage of the crop,” it added.
Based on planting intentions, on the other hand, the April-June 2017 production and harvest area are expected to increase by 40.32 percent and 44.46 percent from their respective levels in 2016. However, yield may drop by 2.87 percent.
“The bulk of this output will come from Cagayan Valley and SOCCSKSARGEN. All regions may see an increase in harvest area since farmers are optimistic there will be sufficient rainfall during the planting period except in CALABARZON and Bicol. In Northern Mindanao, some tobacco areas may be planted to corn during this period,” the PSA said.
To recall, palay and corn production for January to December 2016 were lower than their 2015 levels by 2.88 percent and 3.99 percent, respectively. Decrements in output were noted in three quarters of 2016 (Jan-March, April-June and October to December).
The reduction in outputs in the first two quarters and the last quarter of 2016 were attributed to the dry spell and drought as well as effects of typhoons Lando and Nona in the last quarter of 2015. The latter, was affected by typhoons Karen and Lawin and movement of harvesting to the third quarter of 2016 and the first quarter of 2017.
On the other hand, production from July to September 2016 surpassed the 2015 level due to the movement of harvesting to this quarter.