Price of commercial rice up again

From a report by Alvin Elchico, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 27 2014 08:30 PM | Updated as of Jan 28 2014 04:30 AM

MANILA – The price of commercial rice has gone up again by around P1 per kilo in Commonwealth market.

Vendors said the increase was caused by higher “palay” prices for newly harvested rice.

"Expected na tumataas kasi second cropping, talagang mas konti ang ani niyan,” said rice retailer Marlene Razon.

Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala confirmed the increase in commercial rice prices.

But what's important, Alcala said, is that there is enough supply of the cheaper and highly subsidized rice from the National Food Authority.

"Free enterprise po kasi ‘yan, wala pong karapatan ang pamahalaan, ang DA [Department of Agriculture] o NFA [National Food Authority] man para i-control ang national rice,” said Alcala.

Like potatoes, sayote and carrots have also become more expensive.

But Alcala said traders must not use the cold weather or frost as a reason to jack up prices.

"Ginagamit lang itong dahilan ng ating mga kababayan,” he said.

Prices of vegetables produced outside Cordillera, like eggplants and onions, have also gone up in recent days.

But aside from rice and vegetables, fuel prices are also expected to go up anytime this week.

PTT Philippines announced on Monday that it will increase prices of gasoline by P0.45 per liter and diesel by P0.60 per liter effective 6 a.m. Tuesday to reflect price movement in the international market.