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Philippine agri output negative for third straight year in 2022

Philippine agricultural output remained in negative territory for the third straight year in 2022 as production contracted in three out of the four quarters, government data released on Wednesday revealed.

Data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed that the value of production in agriculture and fisheries contracted by 1.0% in the fourth quarter of the year, attributed to the reduction in the crops and fisheries.

Production of crops fell by 1.0% in the fourth quarter, with the biggest declines seen in corn production which fell by 6.9%, mango by 5.8%, ampalaya by 4.7%, palay (unhusked rice) by 2.5%, and calamansi by 2.5%.

Fisheries production, meanwhile, contracted by 6.6%, with double-digit drops recorded in bigeye tuna (tambakol/bariles) down 43.7%, mudcrab (alimango) down 37.0%, slipmouth (sapsap) down 34.3%, cavalla (talakitok) down 34.2%, grouper (lapu-lapu) down 26.3%, tiger prawn (sugpo) down 14.6%, and skipjack (gulyasan) down 14.4%.

Livestock production increased by 2.5%, as hog and dairy production offset the declines recorded in cattle, carabao, and goat production in the last three months of the year.

Meanwhile, poultry production gained 1.8%, with the production of duck and duck eggs both up by 4.3%, chicken by 2.3%, and chicken eggs by 0.2%.

The full-year value of production in agriculture and fisheries was down by 0.1% in 2022, marking the third straight year of contraction after the -1.7% in 2021 and -1.2% in 2020.

For 2022, production of crops declined by 1.0% and fisheries by 6.6%, while production of livestock increased by 2.5% and poultry by 1.8%.

The PSA earlier reported food inflation for December 2022 at 10.2%, with the inflation rate for vegetables, tubers, plantains, cooking bananas, and pulses recording a decade-high of 32.4%.

The Department of Finance (DOF) last October said inflation was expected to remain elevated for the last quarter of 2022, due to the damage caused by several typhoons that hit the country during the quarter.

Typhoon Karding (international name: Noru) brought about over P3 billion worth of damage and losses to the industry last October, impacting over 170,762 hectares of farm lands across the country.

Severe Tropical Storm Paeng (international name: Nalgae) hit the country in the same month, with the Department of Agriculture (DA) estimating over P2 billion worth of damage and losses in the sector. —KBK, GMA Integrated News