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Agaton's damage to agriculture hits P703.3M

More than P700 million worth of agricultural commodities were wiped out by Tropical Depression Agaton, data released by the Department of Agriculture (DA) showed.

In its typhoon bulletin as of 3 p.m. on April 15, the DA said the damage and losses to agriculture brought by the weather disturbance amounted to P703.3 million.

The tropical depression affected 11,666 farmers with a volume of production loss at 40,850 metric tons (MT) and 17,530 hectares of agricultural areas in Western Visayas, Eastern Visayas, Zamboanga Peninsula, Soccsksargen and Caraga.

Affected commodities include rice, corn, high value crops, and livestock, according to the department.

“These values are subject to validation. Additional damage and losses are expected in areas affected by Agaton,” the DA said.

Rice is the most wiped out commodity with a total volume of production loss  of 39,478 MT amounting to P660.6 million and 17,013 hectares of agricultural areas affected.

High-value crops, such as vegetables, cacao, and fruits, followed with total volume loss of 491 MT amounting to P21.5 million and 109 hectares affected.

Damage to corn totaled P21.1 million with a volume of 881 MT and 408 hectares affected.

Livestock and poultry sustained P48,100 worth of production loss, comprising 275 heads of chicken, swine, duck, and goat.

The DA, through its Regional Field (RFOs), said it is conducting assessment of damage and losses brought by Agaton in the agri-fisheries.

The department added that it continuously coordinates with concerned national government agencies, local government units and other disaster risk reduction and management-related offices for the impact of Agaton, as well as available resources for interventions and assistance.

The DA noted the following assistance will be provided to affected farmers and fishers:

  • rice, corn and assorted vegetable seeds
  • drugs and biologics for livestock and poultry
  • Survival and Recovery (SURE) Program of Agricultural Credit Policy Council (ACPC)
  • available funds from Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) to indemnify affected farmers
  • Quick Response Fund (QRF) for the rehabilitation of affected areas

“The DA-DRRM Operations Center will continuously provide updates regarding Agaton,” it said. —KG, GMA News