Rice: Philippine 2016/17 production forecast unchanged despite typhoons

USDA estimates 2016/17 Philippine rice production at 12.0 million metric tons (milled basis), unchanged from last month, but up 6 percent from last year, the agency said in its latest World Agriculture Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report.

It said harvested area is estimated at 4.8 million hectares, up 3 percent from last year. Yield is estimated above average at 4.01 tons per hectare. Despite two powerful typhoons sweeping across the northern Philippine island of Luzon during October, minimal damage to the rice crop is expected.

Typhoon Sarika struck prime rice growing areas in mid-October 2016, causing widespread flooding and wind-related crop damage. It was followed several days later by Super Typhoon Haima, which struck further north. These storms negatively impacted over 300,000 hectares of rice during the most important time of the year (October to December), but preliminary damage assessments by Philippine government agencies seem to indicate that much of the crop may in fact recover, the report pointed out.

“An actual benefit from the storms was that torrential rains may also have replenished Luzon’s main irrigation reservoirs which would enable greater irrigated crop acreage during the remainder of 2016 and 2017. The October to December period accounts for approximately 40 percent of annual rice production.”

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