Thursday, May 22, 2008

Resources and Population: Always Related

I was born from an impoverished family. We are eight siblings. My dad did not have a steady income, going from one job to another( mostly menial labor) and it was only my mom who was a seamstress who was supporting us regularly. That was a very hard life. A hard life unimagined. It still amazes me up to now how we had survived!

Honestly, i don't want to blame the government why we became poor. Honestly, i asked myself, "why did my parents never think about our future? why are we so many? why will they never think about how many of us will divide a kilo of rice?" Sometimes we never had viand at all and just some sprinkle of salt will be fine or sometimes soy sauce. That was quite special that time. My most favorite will be dried fish and sometimes fish paksiw(fish with vinegar accompanied with local condiments). So, i learned how to grow vegetables especially "malungay". In fact i can still memorize the scientific name : moringa olifera lam! It's because it is always my favorite. And what will i do with the malungay leaves? I will boil 1 liter of water put the malungay leaves, sprinkle some salt, a little bit of msg, and that was our viand. Oh, well, we survived and i survived!

There is always a relationship between resources and population. That is why the price of rice will always be surging so high is because the demand is soooo high and the supply remains the same. And just imagine, how we, Filipinos grow everyday. Look at the rich people. Most of them got 2 or 3 kids. It is quite rare you will see the rich couple with 8 or 10 kids. But you go to the impoverished communities, in our Barangay alone in General Santos City, there is a family with 24 chilren and the house is a nipa hut in a squatter's area. How they sleep? They sit. Yup, they sit when they sleep!

Now, okay, i know how government is corrupt. I know also that family is a basic institution where in the discipline, security and comfort should start. Corruption always start within the family. If every family is secured, then our country is. I always love what John F. Kennedy had said, " Ask not what the government can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country."

Anyway, i got some facts related to rice:

1. The NFA rice is currently the cheapest available in the market, with the “regular variety" being sold at 18.25 pesos per kilogram and 25 pesos per kilogram for the “premium variety." The prices are way cheaper than that of the commercial rice that are already being priced at 38 pesos per kilogram.

2. Rice is a staple for Filipinos and have rice on top of their list of food to buy. Rice, being a source of carbohydrates, is particularly important for the poor who perform difficult tasks or heavy labor.

3. Filipinos consume as much as 29,000 metric tons of rice a day, but with the country’s growing population, rising faster than its Asian neighbors, the demand for rice is also increasing.

4. The government has announced that the number of Filipinos grew nearly 16 percent to 88.57 million as of August 2007 from 76.50 million in May 2000. By 2009, with a projected population of 92.22 million, the Philippines will consume 9.75 million metric tons of rice, higher than the expected 9.56 million metric tons that Filipinos will consume this year.

Rice production, however, is not increasing.

1 comment:

havenlei said...

wonderful write-up!