Marcoleta’s ‘Ikiskiss Mo Beybi’ rice program in Pampanga, launched 

“ADOPTING a farmer” is Congressman Rodante Marcoleta of Sagip Party list’s aim in launching a nationwide campaign to rescue rice farmers, particularly in Bacolor, Pampanga.

The objective is forming a formula that may prevent hoarders and smugglers – believed to be behind the continuous price hikes.

“Kapag may pagmamahal ka talaga, hindi mo na titingnan kung kikita ka. Ang titingnan mo na lang ay maibalik sa puhunan ng sa ganoon, mapaikot mo at maraming matulungan,” Marcoleta told reporters.

Further, he said that his program was gladly welcomed by President Marcos, whose advocacy is to have sufficient food for Filipinos.

The launch held in Bacolor, Pampanga on October 22, offered a fixed price of P35 per kilo of well-milled denorado rice to local consumers, 17 pesos lower than the prevailing market price.

“Gusto nga niya (Marcos) ay magtagumpay tayo sapagkat ito naman talaga ang adhikain niya kaya nga nagkaroon ng pice cap kahit alam niyang mahirap,” the Sagip Party list representative, said.

Hundreds of locals have lined up, hoping to buy at least 5 kilos which they said is enough for two days of consumption. The limit aimed to avoid panic buying and hoarding in order to spread its supply to more consumers.

The program is in collaboration with Marcos’ agenda, which is to achieve food sufficiency and security eventually. “And to realize that, we need to amalgamate all patriotic businessmen in the country who can invest in the program even without profit in the process because that is the only way to help out our farmers and consumers as well as our national government,” Marcoleta explained..

“Gumagawa ng paraan ang ating Pangulo pero kailangan natin siyang tulungan. Hindi puwedeng lagi na lang ang gobyerno ang humahanap ng interes para sa bayan,” the congressman, stressed.

Heeding the call for the program was local businessman Tony Marfori and members of the Pampanga Chamber of Commerce, who bought palay yields directly from the farmers, three pesos higher than the 19 pesos buying price of the National Food Authority (NFA). The product is then dried, properly milled and sold to consumers at a break-even price.

“Ang bigas na ito ay dinorado. Talagang napakasarap at ang presyo nito sa palengke ay P52-P55 per kilo,” Marfori disclosed. (Nelson Santos)