Palay output growth estimated at 5.7% in Q1

OUTPUT of palay (unmilled rice) is estimated to have risen 5.7% year on year in the first quarter, running below initial forecasts, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

In a report, the PSA estimated palay production at 4.79 million metric tons (MT), based on the standing crop as of Feb. 1.

The estimate is 1.1% lower than the initial forecast of 4.84 million MT issued on Jan. 1.

During the quarter, the agency projected the area planted to rice to have increased 3.3% to 1.18 million hectares, with an assumed yield per hectare of palay at 4.06 MT, up 2%.

“About 236 thousand hectares or 20% of the 1,117.85 thousand hectares updated harvest area as of standing crop had been harvested as of Feb. 1, 2023,” the PSA said.

Farmers are expected to have harvested 917.59 thousand MT of palay across 236.06 thousand hectares of farmland.

Of the standing crop, 7.6% is in the vegetative stage, 48.1% in the reproductive stage, and 44.3% in the maturing stage.

The PSA also reported that corn output in the first quarter likely reached 2.56 million MT, up 4.9% from a year earlier.

According to a forecast issued on Jan. 1, corn output is expected to fall 0.1% to 2.56 million MT.

The estimated area planted to corn during the quarter is estimated to have fallen 2.9% year on year to 690.72 thousand hectares, with an assumed yield per hectare of 3.71 MT.

“From the area harvested as of Feb. 1, 2023 of 206.38 thousand hectares, actual production was recorded at 709.74 thousand metric tons,” the agency said.

Of the standing corn crop planted across 484.35 thousand hectares, 5% is at the vegetative stage, 49.9% at the reproductive stage, and 45.1% at the maturing stage. — Sheldeen Joy Talavera