File photo: A farmer harvesting rice
NUEVA ECIJA, Philippines – Farmers are compelled to force harvest their yield as a potential super typhoon “Ompong” heads towards the Philippines.
According to Lenida Reyes, an agriculture officer at the Cabanatuan City Agriculture and Livelihood Management Office (CALMO), almost 90% of the rice crops in the city are in their early vegetative stage and set for harvest supposedly in October.
Reyes said in view of the approaching typhoon, they have no choice but to advise farmers for an early harvest while there is time for their palay to dry, rather than suffer the consequences and drown their crops.
“Para hindi bumaha sa kanilang palayan ibukas na iyong lawasan para iyong tubig hindi mag-stay don sa gitnang palayan,” she said.
Rice farmer, Magno Santiago spent around P50,000 for palay this planting season.
He is supposed to harvest his yield end of September, expecting to earn about 60 sacks of rice from each hectare. However, his hope dwindled upon knowing of an approaching cyclone.
Magno had no choice but to harvest his yield ahead of time than to earn nothing.
“Kahit na lang papaano mapakinabangan iyong mapapakinabangan…Kahit papaaano ay makakuha ng pangkain,” he said.
Meanwhile, the local government of Cabanatuan assured to provide the necessary assistance to farmers who would be affected by the approaching storm.– Marje Pelayo (with reports from Danny Munar)