MANILA (PNA) – Department Agriculture (DA) Secretary Manny Piñol expects the agriculture and fisheries sector to rebound and register positive growth in the last quarter of 2016, as the government provides more support to boost the sector.
The prolonged dry spell caused by El Niño phenomenon reduced production of crops and fisheries yield by 2.34 percent in the second quarter alone. Farm output declined by 3.48 percent in January to June period.
“Moving around the country, I saw vast rice fields already planted and the harvest of corn has started. In fact, the DA is projecting a bumper corn harvest because of the seven-month El Niño which allowed the soil to take a rest,” he said.
Piñol said the Duterte administration aims to distribute one million fishing boats worth Php 7 billion over the next six years that would “effectively mean two million fisherfolk families lifted out of poverty and millions of kilos of fish delivered to the market.”
He said DA would prioritize increasing hog, poultry and duck output, citing its income-earning potentials and contributions to food production.