DA expects rice prices to stabilize before end of October

DA expects rice prices to stabilize before end of October

(File photo)

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Agriculture (DA) is confident that the price of rice in the country will go down in the following weeks due to the arrival of imported rice.

Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol said the season to harvest palay has also begun, which is seen to elevate rice production.

“When do we expect the stabilization of the price of rice in the market? It’s starting in the market actually. By the end of this October, last week of October, we will be instituting reforms in the grains rice market industry,” he said.

Piñol also said that starting next week, the public will be able to determine the rice variant that were imported and locally-produced.

Rice labels will also be limited to four, namely: regular milled (P38/kg), well milled (P40-42/kg), special rice and premium rice (P44/kg).

The suggested retail price for rice is also expected to be released by the National Food Authority (NFA) Council on October 18.

“The exact pricing of SRPs will be determined on October 18, when we will be meeting for the final time with the stakeholders of the rice industry kasama na ang mga farmers, traders, millers and even the rice retailers,” Piñol said.

The Agriculture Secretary, meanwhile, clarified reports on the unimpeded process of rice importation.

He said restrictions will be lifted but a set of guidelines and process will still be followed.

The easier rice importation is in line with President Duterte’s order to government agencies to ensure there is over or enough supply of rice in the country.

“The President never used the unimpeded importation because that would be a disservice and injustice to the Filipino farmers,” Piñol concluded. — Rosalie Coz

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