Crop output slows, livestock output up in Q3

THE country’s crop production in the third quarter posted a decrease while that of livestock, poultry, and fisheries increased, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said.

In a report released on Tuesday, the PSA said that the volume of crop output from July to September reached 16.57 million metric tons (MT), reflecting a decline of 3.1 percent from the 17.11 million MT posted in the same period a year ago.

The Department of Agriculture (DA) said that the output in the third quarter is a clear signal that they need to step up efforts to significantly increase food production and modernize the agriculture sector. The PSA said that gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 5.9 percent in the third quarter from 4.3 percent in the second quarter, with agriculture contributing 0.08 percentage points to GDP as it expanded 0.9 percent in the third quarter.

“While we’re thankful that agriculture continues to contribute to economic growth, we shouldn’t be satisfied with its share in expanding gross domestic product given its role in ensuring food security, creating jobs and reducing poverty,” Agriculture Secretary Francisco Tiu Laurel Jr. said.

The PSA attributed the lower crop output in the third quarter to the annual decreases in the production of sugarcane, which went down by 26.4 percent to 1.38 million MT from 1.88 million MT recorded in 2022.

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Rubber and cup lump output also fell by 12.7 percent to 93,240 MT and coconut by 1.9 percent to 4.04 million MT.

Palay (unmilled rice), the country’s main staple, slightly increased by 0.2 percent to 3.78 million MT.

Meanwhile, livestock production during the third quarter posted an increase of 2.3 percent to 558,150 MT from 545,730 MT during the same period last year.

The top contributor to this increment was hog production, which grew by 3.3 percent annually to 450,900 MT.

Dairy production, meanwhile, fell by 12.4 percent to 6,830 MT from the 7,800 MT posted the previous year.

Carabao production also posted a slight decrease of 0.3 percent to 30,840 MT from 30,930 MT a year earlier.

In the same quarter, poultry production was recorded at 670,480 MT, reflecting an increase of 2.9 percent compared with the previous year’s 651,650 MT.

With a 69.3 percent share of the total volume of poultry production, chicken output grew by 2.3 percent to 464,970 MT in the second quarter.

Duck production in the same quarter was recorded at 6,850 MT, an increase of 3.6 percent from the previous year’s 6,610 MT. Chicken egg output also grew by 4.7 percent to 185,260 MT.

Meanwhile, duck egg production fell by 2.2 percent to 13,400 MT.

The volume of fisheries output reached 1.01 million (MT, showing an increase of 2.1 percent from the 996,310 MT posted in the same months a year ago.

The PSA attributed the growth to annual increases in the production of seaweed, which went up by 14.0 percent to 368,000 MT from 323,5800 MT recorded in 2022. Seaweed contributed the biggest share of total crop output at 36.2 percent

Big-eyed scad (matangbaka) production also went up by 32.8 percent to 32,900 MT and round scad (galunggong) by 17.2 percent to 48,850 MT in the same quarter last year.