Rice traders are able to sell around 100 sacks of NFA rice in a day but can only manage to dispose three to five sacks of commercial rice daily.
As harvest season begins, the price of palay is expected to go down from P25 per kilo to P18-P22 by November until next year according to Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol.
The Department of Agriculture consequently anticipates a price drop as well on commercial rice sold in the markets across the country.
“You have to understand that the buying price of palay — as a rule of thumb — double that is the selling price of rice. So kung ang bilihan ng palay is P20, ang bigas niyan nasa kwarenta, trentay otso kwarenta,” Piñol said.
He reiterated that there is no rice shortage in the country.
“There was and there is no rice shortage, in fact right now umaani na yung mga magsasaka natin, bumabagsak na yung presyo ng palay.”
He said it was the rice hoarders who manipulated the rice supply to jack up its price.
Just last week, police and customs operatives confiscated P300-M worth of smuggled rice from a Bulacan warehouse.
Meanwhile, to address the rice crisis in the Zambasulta area, Piñol is hoping for the enactment of the rice tariffication bill soon. The bill will enable private traders to import rice legally.
“May gagawin na na program na magiging ligal na. In fact, the purpose is to stop smuggling, pero dapat pag pasok ng bigas it should be covered by tariff, quarantine inspection, and sanitary inspection,” Piñol said.
Meanwhile, there is no movement in rice prices at Nepa-Q Mart and Commonwealth Market in Quezon City. NFA rice remains at P27 –P32 per kilo while commercial rice is still at P44-P60 per kilo.
Rice vendor Teresita Terado said, “Ganun pa rin sa dati,hindi ko alam kung kailan magbaba ang presyo.”
Rice traders are able to sell around 100 sacks of NFA rice in a day but can only manage to dispose three to five sacks of commercial rice daily. — Raymond Octobre