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Country Briefs

  Philippines

Reference Date: 21-June-2017

FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT

  1. Cereal production in 2017 forecast close to last year’s high level

  2. Cereal imports in 2017/18 marketing year (July/June) forecast to expand to record level

  3. Prices of rice generally stable in recent months

  4. Large number of people affected by typhoons and El Niño in 2016

Cereal production in 2017 forecast close to last year’s high level

Planting of the 2017 main season rice crop, accounting for about 55 percent of the annual production, is underway. Remote sensing data indicates near-normal rainfall since the first dekad of April over most of the country, which has supported planting operations and early crop development. Rainfall amounts and distribution in the forthcoming months are critical to determine the performance of the 2017 main and secondary paddy crops. Assuming normal weather conditions for the remainder of the season, FAO preliminarily forecasts the 2017 aggregate paddy production at 18.6 million tonnes.

The 2017 secondary season maize production, harvested in May, is officially estimated to have increased to 3.7 million tonnes, reflecting both higher plantings and yields. Considering the gains from the secondary harvest and assuming a normal 2017 main season crop, FAO preliminarily forecasts the 2017 aggregate maize production at 8.3 million tonnes, 3 percent above the last record level.

Cereal imports in 2017/18 marketing year forecast to expand to record level

Total cereal imports in the 2017/18 marketing year (July/June) are forecast at 7.6 million tonnes, 5 percent above last year’s high level. Rice purchases are forecast at 1.5 million tonnes in the 2017 calendar year, up from a three-year low of 740 000 tonnes in 2016. Wheat imports in the 2017/18 marketing year (July/June) are forecast at 5.5 million tonnes, close to last year’s high level, reflecting continuing high demand for both high‑quality wheat for milling and low‑quality wheat for animal feeding. By contrast, maize imports in 2017/18 are forecast to drop by 25 percent to 300 000 tonnes compared with last year’s level, in line with expectations of increased output.

Prices of rice generally stable in recent months

The national average prices of regular and well‑milled rice varieties remained stable in recent months reflecting adequate domestic availabilities. Overall, rice prices in May 2017 were close to their year‑earlier levels.

Large number of people affected by typhoons and El Niño in 2016

In October 2016, central and northern parts of Luzon Island were struck by two typhoons in close succession. Strong winds, heavy rains and localized floods affected at least 1.5 million people and caused loss of life, damages to housing and infrastructure, mostly concentrated in Ilocos Region, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon and Cordillera Administrative Region were the most affected. In addition, over 400 000 farming households were affected by drought and dry spells associated with 2015/16 El Niño phenomenon. Most of the population affected by the typhoons is critically dependent on agriculture for their livelihoods and many are vulnerable to food insecurity.