Author: Rolando T. Dy
Any views expressed in this article are those of the author and not of Philippine Statistics Authority.
Once again, a food price crisis has hit the country. It was so in 1995, in 2015 and this year. What seems to be wrong?
The National Food Authority, the sole rice importer/regulator, failed in its mandate of food security. But that is the short of it. The long-term challenges are more complicated that they must be understood by all stakeholders.
Food security is defined as the state in which people at all times have physical, social and economic access to sufficient and nutritious food that meets their dietary needs for a healthy and active life—Food and Agriculture Organization.
There are three main metrics: affordability, availability and food quality. The Economist Intelligence Unit developed the global food security index (GFSI), the latest was dated September 2017. The GFSI work is sponsored by DuPont.
Affordability “measures the ability of consumers to purchase food, their vulnerability to price shocks and the presence of programmes and policies to support customers when shocks occur.” It has six indicators: Food consumption as a share of household expenditure, proportion of the population under the global poverty line at purchasing power parity (PPP), gross domestic products per head at PPP exchange rates, agricultural import tariffs, presence of food safety-net programs and access to financing for farmers. This comprises 40 percent of GFSI.