Scientists Call for Thoroughgoing Reforms to Resolve Rice Crisis

To address the rice crisis, a group of Filipino scientists joined farmers in calling for a genuine agrarian reform program, mechanization and development of agriculture and support for farmers, among others.

Volume VIII, Number 25, July 27-August 2, 2008

Scientists belonging to AGHAM or Samahan ng Nagtataguyod ng Agham at Teknolohiya para sa Sambayanan (Association for the Promotion of Science and Technology for the People) said that the measures being implemented by the Arroyo government would not resolve the rice crisis.

They proposed several alternatives, including subsidy for farmers, mechanization of agriculture and a genuine agrarian reform program.


In a forum, July 24, Reynan Calderon, an agricultural economist teaching at the Bataan Peninsula State University (BPSU) said that the continuing rice deficiency is the pre-condition for the rice crisis.

He said that from 1991-2006, there was a 42 percent increase in the consumption of rice.

Calderon said that in the 70s and 80s, imported rice accounted for five percent of total consumption. He said that this increased to 14 percent by 2007.

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