Blog about the upcoming food shortage crisis

Everybody throws stones at the prophet, but when the crisis comes they yell: “Why nobody warned us?”

UN official: Philippine gov’t taking right steps on food issue 2008-04-04 14:35:36 Print
    MANILA, April 4 (Xinhua) — The Philippine government is taking right steps to prevent a possible food crisis, an official of the United Nations’ World Food Program (WFP) said on Friday.

    “Initially, we wouldn’t have been so concerned about the Philippines because it already is responsible for growing internally about 85 percent of the food that it consumes,” Valerie Guarnieri, WFP’s country director in the Philippines, told local media.

    Guarnieri said the Philippine government can fill up the remaining 15 percent by just making “extra efforts” to get commitments from other countries to supply the food needed by the country, Philippine TV network ANC reported.

    She said securing rice imports is one of the two best ways to prevent a food crisis in the country, which she said is being “aggressively” pursued by the government.

    Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo had announced that Vietnam has committed to sell the government 1.5 million metric tons of rice, which she said will augment the country’s rice supply starting June.

    Arroyo had also said that she plans to convince Thailand to sell additional rice for the country.

    The government has also started the process of providing rice stubs to poor Filipinos, as well as other measures to mitigate the rising prices of rice.

    The National Food Authority has started selling 18.50 pesos (0.44 U.S. dollars) per kilo rice in poor communities.

    The other way to mitigate the increasing prices of staple needs is to provide food subsidies to the poor, which Garnieri said is already being done by the Philippine government.

    Guarnieri said the increasing prices of rice, and its possible unavailability in the world market, can turn out as a positive development for Philippine agriculture, especially for the farmers.

    Countries, including the Philippines, would have to “reemphasize the need to look also at local production” now that there is a looming world food crisis, she said.

    In the Philippines, she said, the government should focus on measures on how to improve measures that would not only increase food security, but also “benefit poor farmers.”


Editor: Sun Yunlong



April 4, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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