MANILA - Sardines manufacturers said they plan to appeal the price hike allowed by the Department of Trade and Industry as it was not enough to cover production costs.
The Canned Sardine Producers of the Philippines (CSAP) said P1.50 price hike announced by the DTI in the suggested retail price of some sardines brands was just half of the P3.00 increase proposed by the organization.
CSAP President Francisco Buencamino said this is unacceptable.
"We will try to negotiate, but P1.50 is unacceptable," Buencamino said.
He said the existing SRP prior to today's bulletin, which is at P18, is already below their production cost.
Buencamino said he'll file a motion for reconsideration to keep the canneries afloat. He said DTI has "weaponized" the SRP against manufacturers "to earn brownie points" from consumers.
Aside from pricing, CSAP warned the public about the dwindling supply of sardines caught in their fishing areas.
Zamboanga, where bulk of tamban or sardines is fished, remains closed for until the end of February. The organization is appealing to the government to allow them to fish nearer the shores.
The current delineation shows that commercial fishing vessels cannot catch fish 15 kilometers from the shore. They are now appealing to reduce it to 7 kilometers.
"Yung 15 kilometers, political measure yan. Gusto namin yung scientific measure," he said.
To get by, canneries are sourcing fish from provinces not covered by the closed fishing season, like Sorsogon.