DA assure consumers 'no reason for panic buying'-A A +A
Friday, September 20, 2013
RICE retailers in Cagayan de Oro City assured the public that there is no reason to go panic buying because the price of rice will eventually decrease after its rapid increases two months ago until last week.
The decrease of the rice price is seen as harvests have begun last week.
Cogon Market Rice and Corn Retailers’ Association information officer Jerry Mabao told Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro Thursday that for the last two months the price of rice had increased rapidly every week.
“Per week gyud ang pag-increase ng commercial rice … gikan sa P36 niabot gyud siya og P42-43 (The price of commercial rice had increased per week, from P36 it reached P42-43 per kilo),” he said.
Mabao explained that the Manila rice price had increased from around P1,600 to 1,900 which is tantamount to a P100 to P300 increase per sack.
The broken rice had also increased from P1,600 to P1,800 or a price increase of P200 per sack.
“Never niabot ang P500 to P1,000 increase on price (The price increase did not reach P500 to P1,000),” he added.
He also said that if there was ample supply of commercial rice the weekly price increase for the last two months would not happen.
“Menos ang supply, and nisaka pud ang krudo (There were times the supply was less, plus the oil price increased too),” said Mabao, explaining the possible factors causing the rice price hike.
He added that the increase on the price of gasoline led to high cost of transportation adding to the factor that caused the hike of rice price.
“Kung magdungan dili man gyud nimo ma-stable ang supply sa local kung magdungan mo og tanum og madungan ta og harvest,” he said.
He said that it would be better if the (rice) planting season should be planned out carefully so retailers do not have to import rice from other regions and abroad.
“Naay mga months nga wala tay imported rice mao nga medyo gamay ra ang bugas sa imaging duha ka buwan, pero Central Luzon mi-supply ining mga panahona (There were months that we did not have imported rice but good enough central Luzon has supplied us),” he said.
Mabao said that if the region continues with its ineffective planning in planting and harvesting, the option to have imported rice can help stabilize the local price.
The imported rice is cheaper than the local rice produced by farmers in the region.
Ample rice supply
“Karon kay harvest season na mobarato na ang bugas (Since it is already the harvest season the price of rice will eventually drop),” said Mabao.
He also added that the people in the region have nothing to worry about because the supply of imported rice just came in.
The imported rice plus the supply from the local farmers will result to a decrease of the price of rice in the local market.
DA assures consumers
In a statement Wednesday, the Department of Agriculture (DA) assured that there is ample supply of rice for the consumers in the region.
DA regional director Lealyn A. Ramos revealed that 354,399 metric tons (MT) of palay produced from 82,110 hectares (has) which is 63 percent of the total land area planted.
Ramos said that there is enough supply of rice and that the irregular fluctuation of prices in the market should not be used to measure the insufficiency of rice in the country.
Ramos said further that the public has diverse choices with regard to rice varieties for sale.
Based on DA’s monitoring results in the city’s major public markets, the price of well-milled rice ranges from P40 to P42; regular milled rice at P32-38; premium rice at P40-45; and the fancy rice at P55-65 per kilo.
DA said the price of the National Food Authority (NFA) rice still remains at P27 per kilo according to the monitoring results, as it provides stocks in the regions’ markets.
DA added that the NFA already disseminated 552,923 sacks of rice in the five provinces of the region.
Meanwhile, Mary Padin, a rice retailer at Puerto public market, told Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro in an interview on Tuesday that the price of rice has increased around P500 to P1,000 per sack. However NFA in its letter sent to this paper dated September 18, claimed Padin denied giving any statement citing the said figures.
NFA regional director Miguel Wycoco said that one of its investigators, Thaddeau Abuzo, talked to Padin to verify the statement the latter gave to this paper.
Wycoco said Padin told Abuzo that she was interviewed by this reporter “regarding the purchase cost of commercial rice of which she averred that she purchased Azucena Premium rice price at P2,000 per bag and retails at P45 per kilogram.”
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on September 20, 2013.