Rice price hike looms in October
AGRICULTURAL watchdog groups warned of a possible increase in the price of rice next month due to low farm output, aggravated by slow release of government funds to palay farmers.
Bantay Bigas spokesperson Cathy Estavillo said the group already monitored an increase of around P1 to P2 per kilogram of regular-milled rice three weeks ago. “Another increase of P3 to P4 could happen next month,” she said.
The group, however, said that the looming price hike may be prevented if government hastens to deliver the promised financial assistance including but not limited to immediate release of cash aid to palay farmers.
Last week, the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) announced the release of PHP 8 billion to the Department of Agriculture (DA) for the distribution of cash subsidies for farmers that included P3-billion fund for the Rice Farmer’ Financial Assistance Program.
Farmers, however, have yet to receive from the program. The DA has not issued any statement on it.
With the looming price increase, carinderia and eatery owners will also be forced to increase their prices for cups of rice.
Mang Felix, a small carinderia owner in Calasiao town, said his carinderia charges P10 per cup of rice, but this could soon become PHP 11.
While there is an option to reduce the amount of rice usually served, he said he will likely be at the receiving end of complaints from his regular customers. (Ahikam Pasion)
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