Barring adverse weather condition in H2, PHL on track to historic palay yield in 2021


The Philippines is on track to achieve its 20-million metric ton (MMT) historic palay harvest target this year if production momentum will be sustained after first half output grew by almost 5 percent to a record-high of nearly 8.8 MMT.

Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) data released on Monday showed that palay production in the January-to-June period reached 8.799 MMT, 413,000 MT higher than the 8.386 MMT recorded in the same period of last year.

The first half palay harvest erased the 8.713 MMT previous record level for the six-month production volume that was posted in 2018, historical PSA data analyzed by the BusinessMirror showed.

The actual first half palay production was slightly higher than the PSA’s forecast of 8.79 MMT.

Following the PSA’s earlier forecast, the Department of Agriculture (DA) expressed confidence anew that it would be able to achieve its target of producing 20.4 MMT of palay this year, particularly if devastating typhoons will not visit the country this year.

“We have been working hard toward achieving this production growth. We hope we can do better this second semester,” Agriculture Secretary William D. Dar told the BusinessMirror via SMS in a previous story.

The BusinessMirror first reported that first half palay production could reach record high due to the expansion in harvest area and yield. (Related story:

The value of the palay harvest in the first half, at constant 2018 prices, reached a record level of P175.916 billion, 4.88 percent higher than the P167.727 billion recorded last year, based on PSA data. At current prices, first half palay production was worth P148.824 billion, 2.1 percent higher than the P145.657 billion recorded last year.

However, the average farm-gate price of palay during the reference period declined by 2.64 percent to P16.91 per kilogram from P17.37 per kilogram, based on PSA data.

The country’s palay output in the second quarter grew slightly to 4.172 MMT from 4.125 MMT in the same period of last year, according to PSA.

Government officials and experts attributed the increase in rice harvest to the Rice  Competitiveness Enhancement Fund (RCEF), which seeks to make Filipino planters competitive against their counterparts in Asean.

Industry groups like the Philippine Chamber of Agriculture and Food Inc. (PCAFI) also noted that better planting and weather conditions in the first half contributed to the increase in palay output as harvest was not affected by any typhoons.

The Philippines produced a record 19.44 MMT of palay last year, which translates to a self-sufficiency level of 90 percent. This sufficiency level would rise to 95 percent if the government would be able to hit its production target for 2021, the DA said.

Due to the expected increase in rice production this year, the United States Department of Agriculture has projected that Philippine rice imports would decline by 14.28 percent to 2.1 MMT. Despite the contraction in volume, the Philippines would remain as the world’s second-biggest buyer of rice for the second consecutive year.

Image courtesy of Nonie Reyes

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