DAMAGE brought by the recent onslaught of Southwest Monsoon, or Habagat, enhanced by Tropical Depression Henry to the agriculture sector of Negros Occidental has climbed to almost P3.3 million, the final report of the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist (OPA) showed.
OPA yesterday reported that a total of 519 rice and corn farmers covering an area of almost 518 hectares in 25 barangays of eight local government units (LGUs) in the province are affected.
The rice sector incurred the biggest amount of production losses, a total of P3,279,455. The figure covers 506 affected farmers with combined areas of 568.27 hectares.
Of which, Bago City posted the highest damage worth about P936,038. This accounts for 59 rice farmers covering the 86.42-hectare area in four barangays of the locality.
It was followed by San Enrique with P851,940 in production losses. Fifty-six farmers with a combined area of 100.46 hectares in four barangays of the town are affected.
In three barangays of Hinigaran town, 181 farmers with 192.5-hectare rice farms incurred P519,750 worth of damage.
Other localities affected are Ilog incurring production losses worth P310,320; Pulupandan - P267,556; Kabankalan – P209,803.50; Moises Padilla - P161,172; and Binalbagan, P22,875.
Eighty-eight farmers with a total area of 107.30 hectares are affected in Ilog, 11 farmers with 13.25 hectares in Pulupandan, 38 farmers with 35.8 hectares in Kabankalan, 58 farmers with 24.79 hectares in Moises Padilla, and 12 farmers with 7.75 hectares in Binalbagan.
In terms of affected barangays, Ilog has two; Pulupandan – three; Kabankalan – two; Moises Padilla – six; and Binalbagan – one.
For the corn sector, heavy rains and strong winds affected 3.7-hectare farms of 13 farmers in Moises Padilla. They incurred a total damage worth P15,466, the OPA further reported.
The final report covers the period of July 15 to 23, it added.
Provincial Agriculturist Japhet Masculino told SunStar Bacolod on Thursday that the amount of damage, especially to the province’s sector, is still minimal.
Masculino, however, said that if calamities like typhoons continue, “the production losses will accumulate and eventually result in a big effect our quest to attain sufficiency in Negros Occidental.”
OPA earlier advised farmers to avail of the Negros First Universal Crop Insurance Program (NFUCIP) of the province in partnership with the Philippine Crop Insurance Corp. (PCIC).
Through the crop insurance program, affected farmers may avail of the P17,000 claims per hectare of damaged farms subject to assessment and validation.
It also urged farmers to immediately report any damage in their crops due to calamities to avail buffer stocks like seeds.