Barely recovering from a rice crisis, the Philippines faces a major corn shortage that could cause a domestic shortfall in meat products and force the closure of firms involved in the livestock and poultry industry. In a consultative meeting on 26 June on the commercialisation of organic and microbial fertilizers, Dennis Araullo, the head of


GMA (Ginintuang Masaganang Ani) Corn Program , said the high prices of inorganic fertilizers are forcing many farmers to either not plant corn or to cut their planting of the crop by half. If the national production of corn does not meet the 7.9-million metric ton target for this year, the country may have to import the grain. This option poses problems, since corn is in short supply worldwide. Because of the possible major corn shortage, Gicana said the Agriculture department will set talks with the Land Bank of the Philippines to provide financing for corn farming and the production of organic fertilizers. Another option is to provide subsidy coupons for fertilizers to corn farmers. Rice growers have been availing of subsidy coupons for rice.