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Manipulation eyed in pork price hike

Bella Cariaso - The Philippine Star
Manipulation eyed in pork price hike
A vendor arranges meat up for sale at Paco Public Market in Manila on February 1, 2024.
STAR / Edd Gumban

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Agriculture (DA) is eyeing possible price manipulation in the surge in the retail prices of pork in the Visayas and Mindanao.

The price hike occurred even as farmgate prices of pork remain low at P180 per kilo.

At a press conference yesterday, DA Assistant Secretary Arnel De Mesa confirmed that the retail price of pork in the Visayas and Mindanao increased by P10 per kilo.

“We will coordinate with the local government through the local price coordinating council to know the reason behind the high retail price and if there is price

The price hike occurred even as the farmgate price of pork remains low at P180 per kilo.

At a press conference yesterday, DA Assistant Secretary Arnel de Mesa confirmed that the retail price of pork in the Visayas and Mindanao had increased by P10 per kilo.

“We will coordinate with local government units through their local price coordinating councils to know the reason behind the high retail price, and if there is price manipulation,” De Mesa said.

De Mesa, who is also spokesman for the DA, reiterated a statement of Rosendo So that there is no reason for the spike in the retail price of the commodity in the Visayas and Mindanao.

So is chairman of farmers’ group Samahang Industriya ng Agrikultura.

“When we checked the farmgate prices, there were no significant changes in the prices of pork and chicken. The increase occurs between retailers and traders, and we observed a P10-increase in the retail price of pork shoulder and pork belly,” De Mesa said.

He said the unnecessary increase in the retail price of pork was among the issues discussed during a consultation with livestock industry stakeholders last week.

“Stakeholders are reacting to the movement in the retail prices of both pork and chicken. We are talking about the livestock program. The DA’s regional directors were directed to act on the matter immediately as this is a local problem,” De Mesa said.

He said the outbreak of African swine fever (ASF) is a recurring problem in the country and needs to be managed well.

De Mesa said that despite the ASF, the country’s hog production increased in 2023 based on a report of the Philippine Statistics Authority.

He said the prevailing prices of pork shoulder and pork belly in Luzon as of Friday and Saturday were P320 and P380 per kilo, respectively.

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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

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