MANILA - The Department of Agriculture (DA) is asking President Rodrigo Duterte and the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) for an additional P1 billion to augment the assistance fund for typhoon-hit farmers and fisherfolk.
"The P1-B would be used in replenishing the P350-M which is now being readied for disbursement to assist the rice and corn farmers and fishermen affected by the recent typhoons," Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said.
Piñol said he also asked Duterte to "to order the National Food Authority (NFA) to buy the rice and corn produce of farmers which were drenched by floodwaters."
"Private traders will not buy these rice because of the discoloration, but when processed, it still possesses good eating quality," he said.
"These could still be milled and given out in the form of food assistance to victims of calamities," he added.
Piñol said at least P10 billion in agricultural damage was estimated in Northern Luzon alone after at least three typhoons entered the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR) last month.
Three other storms are expected to enter PAR this November, state weather bureau PAGASA earlier said.