Piñol: It’s dangerous to rely on rice imports
Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said the Philippines cannot abandon its rice sufficiency goals and rely completely on importation because of the unpredictability of climate change.
Piñol said in an interview with dwIZ that rice is one of the country’s most important commodities, so there should always be stock that’s good for six months at any given time.
“Napaka-unpredictable ng ating klima as of the moment, so dapat palaging handa tayo. The idea that we would just abandon rice sufficiency objective at aasa na lang tayo sa ibang countries like Vietnam. What if tamaan ng sakuna ang Vietnam? Saan tayo kukuha ng supply? We never know what will happen in the future,” he said.
He said the Philippines needs to attain rice sufficiency not only to feed the country but to give farmers higher income.
“Kaibigan natin ang mga traders pero minsan masyado na nila nakokontrol ang presyo ng bigas,” he said.