The advice by the government for Filipinos to cut back on their consumption is not only a stupid suggestion, but also downright impractical and inhuman. Even if the government will not give this suggestion, the Filipino consumers wouldn’t have enough to eat at this time because of the skyrocketing price of rice and other commodity goods. How can an ordinary Pinoy sustain his food reqiurements if he has no income simply because he is jobless. Isn’t that simple to decipher?
I don’t think it is appropriate for the government to give this kind of advice. In fact, majority of the population are already impoverished. That means, most of them could not afford to have three square meals per day. I think it would be better if the government can do something to alleviate the sad plights of the poor farmers. Give them more incentives, as suggested by Sen. Loren Legarda. "Farmers should be given mlore support by the government," Legarda said in a press report. This can be done by increasing their agricultural production through improve irrigation system and fertilizer subsidy.
It is not surprising why the Philippine experiences rice shortage. At this time, only a few farmers have opted to cultivate their lands because they do not have the resources to pay for labor, seedlings and fertilizer and other inputs needed. All these problems fall on the shoulders of the poor farmers. However, those with big lands can still opt to plant rice because they have the resources to spare. But the government must monitor their activities, especially during the harvest season because some of them may again keep their husked rice in their warehouses for a long time and wait for the price to go up before they would dispose them to the domestic markets.
However, with the price of husked rice raised to P17 per kilo, I’m sure many farmers would be encouraged to plant. But the looming problem is that the National Food Authority may run out of cash. If there is enough supply, an oversight committee must see to it that the NFa will buy them. Otherwise, the poor farmers will again bring their produce to the unscrupulous traders who will buy their palays at a lower price. It would be easier for the NFA to tell the farmers that the budget allocation was not yet released so that the farmers will have no option but to seek other buyers somewhere else.