New NFA warehouse boosts Bicol disaster preparedness

The National Food Authority’s (NFA) rice prepositioning stock capacity in Bicol has increased due to the opening of a new warehouse in Camarines Sur, a significant step towards ensuring food security in the region, especially during times of calamity.

Rice photo by bykst via Pixabay
The warehouse in Libmanan, which can hold 100,000 bags of rice, effectively boosts the province’s total capacity to almost a million bags of rice, from 872,000 bags prior to the warehouse’s inauguration. The construction of the warehouse brings the number of warehouses in Region 5 to 18.

The warehouse is within the parameters that can withstand 250 kilometers per hour wind velocity and magnitude intensity 7 earthquake.

“Considering na ang Region 5 ay lagging tinatamaan ng bagyo dahil sa climate change, very vital ang role ng Libmanan warehouse,” said NFA Administrator Renan Dalisay.

“Imbes na magpapadala pa tayo doon ng stocks habang nag-uumpisa na ang bagyo, mag-i-improve ang ating prepositioning sa Bicol dahil makakapaglagay tayo ng additional stocks doon.”

Construction of the warehouse, worth P19,782,929.52, began on March 1, 2013, and was finished on October 10 the same year.

The warehouse is accessible using a barangay access road, which was built with assistance from the Department of Agriculture.

The NFA ramped up palay procurement in Bicol and other parts of the country during the harvest season, buying palay from farmers at P17 per kilogram, with additional incentives for delivery and drying. This is with the aim of ensuring a stable supply plus buffer stocks for Filipinos during the so-called “lean months” when there is no rice harvest.

The Libmanan warehouse, prior to its inauguration, was already utilized to serve as a palay buying station during harvest season, and also supplied retailers with their rice allocation.

The use of the warehouse as a hub made it easier for farmers to sell their palay. It has also eased the way for retailers to get stocks, as they will no longer have to travel all the way to the NFA provincial office in Pili.