Sugar leader to file case vs Coke for smuggling

MANUEL Lamata, president of United Sugar Producers Federation of the Philippines Inc., said on Monday, July 10, that he will file a case against officials of Coca-Cola Femsa Philippines allegedly withdrawing high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) put on hold by the Bureau of Customs.

They will all face a case from the Sugar Alliance of the Philippines (SAP), he added.

The Sugar Regulatory Administration, in its Sugar Order No. 3, Series of 2017, guides the issuance of clearance for release of imported HFCS and chemically pure fructose.

Lamata said Coca Cola Femsa has just promised the sugar leaders that they will buy sugar instead of HFCS, but what happened is they still use HFCS of about 90 percent in beverage production.

“Their buying power is eight million bags of sugar but they only bought a million bags from the local producers. Still a meager percentage of 10 percent represented its purchase of locally-produced sugar,” Lamata said.

“I will be the one to file the case against Bob Reischauer of Coca-Cola Femsa. Two weeks from now, they will expect a new case from us,” Lamata added.

On the other hand, the SAP has withdrawn their boycott policy against Pepsi-Cola Products Philippines Inc. following the company’s purchase of three million bags of sugar from the local producers.

“As of now, they have bought three million in a span of two months but Coca-Cola only bought one million bags,” Lamata said.

He noted that the prevailing price of sugar per bag is P1,450 which is not a good price.

“We are asking for a price of P1,650 per bag,” he added.
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