The damage of Typhoon Quinta to the agriculture sector already rose to nearly P2 billion, from the previously reported P706 million, prompting the Department of Agriculture (DA) to fast-track the distribution of assistance for affected farmers and fishermen.
The latest report from DA’s Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (DRRM) showed that the total amount of damage and losses in agri-fisheries due to Quinta is now at P1.7 billion, with the typhoon affecting 30,438 farmers and fisherfolk.
Moreover, volume loss stood at 103,520 metric tons (MT), while as much as 73,098 hectares of agricultural areas in Ilocos Region, CALABARZON, MIMAROPA, Bicol Region, Western Visayas, Eastern Visayas and Zamboanga Peninsula were affected.
Affected commodities include rice, corn, high value crops, fisheries, and livestock, while irrigation and agri-facilities were also heavily damaged.
“The increase in values is attributed to the updated reports in rice, corn and livestock and poultry from the provinces of Batangas, Cavite, Laguna, Romblon, Mindoro Provinces, Marinduque, Antique, Iloilo, Biliran, Leyte and Northern Samar,” DA-DRRM said.
“The DA regional field offices in Quinta-affected regions are thoroughly assessing and validating damage and losses in the agri-fisheries sector,” it added.
The DA is now planning to withdraw P795 million from its Quick Response Fund for the rehabilitation of farms and fishing communities hit by Quinta, which already left the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) three days ago.
QRF is a built-in fund allocation that serves as a standby budget that certain agencies like DA can tap to immediately assist areas stricken by catastrophes and crises.
It gets regularly replenished by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM).
Other assistance the DA is planning are the provision of loans under the Survival and Recovery (SURE) program of Agricultural Credit Policy Council (ACPC) and the distribution of indemnification funds from Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC).
A total of 33,148 bags of rice seeds, 8,310 bags of corn seeds, and 1,792 kilograms of assorted vegetables from other regions will also be provided to affected agricultural stakeholders.