ILOILO CITY — Western Visayas seems to have weathered the storm as prices of coconut oil and related products have stabilized to near-normal levels seven months after super typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan) slammed the region.
The Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) said Yolanda almost brought Western Visayas down to its knees with thousands of coconut trees destroyed, notably in the province of Aklan where about 6 to 8 percent of coconut oil is sourced.
According to the PCA Regional Office 6, Yolanda bore down heavily on the region’s coconut industry with damage reaching up to 16 percent, and Aklan province bearing the brunt of nature’s wrath.
Although prices are going down, it foresees a production shortfall in 1-2 years albeit the PCA is aiming to distribute to farmers 550,000 of seedlings to replace fallen trees and along with it specialized fertilizers to aid faster growth.
In the aftermath of the storm, prices of oil shot up to a high P78 per kilo, but lately the figure slid to P22-24 a kilo. Things are looking up for the regional coconut industry, but much remains to be done to fix the damage, the horrors of the calamity still vivid in the minds of coconut farmers here.