Duterte to go all out in promoting corn as alternative to rice
An a bid to reduce the country’s independence on imported rice, Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said that President Rodrigo Duterte will now go all out to endorse corn as an alternative to rice.
“President Rody Duterte’s endorsement of the Blended Rice and Corn as a national staple food on December 22 in Davao City will not only offer an healthier option for the Filipino consumer but will finally erase the image of Corn as a poor man’s rice,” Piñol said.
“More than that, the acceptance by Filipino consumers of the Blended Rice and Corn or Bigas-Mais will finally end the country’s dependence on imported rice to fill up the shortfall on the rice requirements of the Philippines,” he added.
According to Piñol, the Presidential endorsement will actually be the proverbial “hitting four birds with one stone” because it will accomplish the following: provide a healthier option to Filipino consumers with Low Glycemic and non-GMO corn, especially in the face of worsening health problems caused by diabetes; make available a more affordable staple food because two kilos of vacuum-packed Blended Rice and Corn is set to be sold in the market at no more than P35 per kilo, compared to about P50 per kilo for white rice; and create a new and huge market for Corn farmers in the country who are facing stiff competition from imported corn and wheat.
This move to promote corn also aims to end the country’s rice supply shortfall with the infusion in 2019 of about 500,000-metric tons of corn grits and 1-million metric tons in 2020.
As a result, it will help the country achieve food staple sufficiency for only the second time in the history of the country.