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Agri damage due to Odette reaches P6 billion

Typhoon Odette has caused P6 billion worth of damage to agriculture, the Department of Agriculture said in updated figures on Monday.

The amount covers the volume of production loss of 118,426 metric tons (MT) and 288,677 hectares of agricultural areas in CALABARZON, Mimaropa, Bicol, Western Visayas, Central Visayas, Eastern Visayas, Zamboanga Peninsula, Northern Mindanao, Davao, SOCCSKSARGEN, and Caraga.

The calamity affected 68,991 farmers and fishers.

Affected commodities include rice, corn, high value crops, coconut, livestock, and fisheries.

Agricultural infrastructure, machineries, and equipment have also been damaged.

"These values are subject to validation," the DA said.

Despite the huge losses, the DA said 11,454 hectares of rice were harvested from Regions Mimaropa, VI, VIII, IX, XI, and XIII, yielding 34,433 metric tons worth P615.53 million prior to Odette’s landfall.

A total of 2,452 hectares of corn were harvested from Mimaropa and Regions IV-A, VIII, IX, XI, and XIII, yielding 6,965 metric tons worth P82.55 million.

The DA said it would provide at least P2.9 billion worth of readily available assistance to farmers, consisting of:

1. P1 billion worth of Quick Response Fund (QRF) for the rehabilitation of affected areas;

2. P828 million from the Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) to indemnify affected farmers.

3. P500 million under the Survival and Recovery (SURE) Assistance Program of the Agricultural Credit Policy Council (ACPC) for 20,000 farmers and fisherfolk at P25,000 each;

4. P314 million worth of rice seeds, P129 million worth of corn seeds, P57 million worth of assorted vegetables;

5. P47 million worth of assistance to affected fisherfolk from Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR);

6. P6.6 million worth of animal stocks, drugs and biologics for livestock and poultry; and

7. Available funds from Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA).

— Ma. Angelica Garcia/BM, GMA News