Indonesian Food Commodities Threatened by La Nina Phenomenon

la nina phenomenon
Indonesian Food Commodities Threatened by La Nina Phenomenon (photo: jatengdaily)

The National Food Agency (Bapanas) is taking proactive steps to safeguard food supplies, particularly horticultural products, amidst concerns over the La Nina weather phenomenon. La Nina is feared to disrupt various food commodities across Indonesia.

Budi Waryanto, head of Bapanas’s Bureau of Planning, Cooperation, and Public Relations, emphasized Indonesia’s prior experience in dealing with extreme rainfall in 2022.

To address this, Bapanas is collaborating with the Ministry of Agriculture (Kementan) to ensure timely planting and harvesting of horticultural crops based on forecasts from the Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysics Agency (BMKG).

“This involves scheduling planting and harvesting according to BMKG’s predictions,” Budi stated during a public discussion titled ‘Ensuring Food Availability and Affordability Pre and Post Eid al-Fitr 2024’ on Wednesday (27/3/2024).

Additionally, the government plans to closely monitor horticultural centers such as chili in Garut, West Java, and shallots in Brebes and Solo, Central Java.

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Budi stressed that these regions will receive heightened attention, particularly in managing planting and harvesting to ensure smooth production.

On another front, Bapanas has initiated a cold storage assistance program for production centers. Budi explained that this program aids farmers in temporarily storing surplus harvests or during market price fluctuations.

Budi expressed hope that these cold storage facilities would be effectively utilized, considering the perishable nature of horticultural products. He believes that with efficient planting management and advanced technology, the impact of La Nina on food commodities can be minimized, ensuring stable market prices and food availability.

According to BMKG’s previous forecasts, the El Nino phenomenon is expected to transition to neutral from May to June 2024. Subsequently, Indonesia is poised to enter the La Nina phase in the following quarter.

Dwikorita Karnawati, Head of BMKG, indicated that Indonesia’s transition to La Nina from July to September 2024 may bring about increased rainfall, flood risks, and tropical storms.

“With the potential shift to a weak La Nina after the third quarter of July, August, September 2024, we anticipate heightened weather conditions,” she explained during a press conference, as reported on Sunday (17/3/2024).