An official from the City Agriculturist Office (Cagro) reported that the current state of rice production in Davao City is deemed "okay" despite the looming threat of El Niño.
Pablita Almador, Cagro's rice production focal person, bared a radio interview on the morning of December 27, 2023, that while the city's rice production is currently stable, there is a concern about the potential escalation of the El Niño phenomenon and its impact on rice cultivation.
Although Davao City is experiencing occasional rains, she said these showers are attributed to El Niño. She noted that other regions are already witnessing a temperature rise.
Almador highlighted the forecast predicting the immediate impact of El Niño in the first quarter of 2024. The office is actively preparing precautionary measures in case the city experiences a prolonged absence of rain.
“Kay strong El Niño man gyud siya pag muabot na gyud si El Niño, wala na gyud siyay ulan ang porsyento sa ulan ubos na gyud kaayo. Tapos kana nga time mangandoy na gyud ta ana naay bagyo pero ang forecast pod ana kay zero to one bagyo (Given the strength of El Niño, once it arrives, there will be no more rain, and the chances of rainfall will significantly decrease. This is a critical time, and we might hope for a typhoon, but the forecast indicates zero to one typhoon),” she added.
According to her, water is a crucial element for crop cultivation, and during El Niño, the dry, hot, and dusty conditions make it impossible for farmers to plant crops.
Almador underscored that climate poses a significant threat to the agriculture sector, with plants being the first casualties.
Thus, she urged farmers in the city not to solely rely on Cagro but to proactively safeguard their crops from infestation and the impending threat of El Niño. RGP