Noche Buena products not subject to price control – DTI

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MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Trade and Industry on Thursday (07 November 2019) said it has no control on Christmas or Noche Buena products prices and so massive hike on their unit prices are greatly expected even before the holidays.

Secretary Ramon M. Lopez said on Thursday (07 November 2019) that the suggested retail prices (SRP) of Noche Buena products had been adjusted by as much as 11 percent as the price of raw materials had also increased by as much as 40 percent.

These includes the products such as fruit cocktail, ham, cheese, mayonnaise, sandwich spread, queso de bola, spaghetti sauce, tomato sauce, macaroni, spaghetti and creamer.

According to Lopez, some brands increased their prices by 2 to 11 percent.

“This is in consideration of the 30- to 40-percent increases in cost of some materials,” Lopez said.

These are the Noche Buena product prices (ranges from):

Ham – P135 to P1,025

Fruit cocktail – P50.35 to P239.40

Cheese – P49.50 to P269.50

Sandwich spread – P21.05 to P205.80

Mayonnaise – P28 to P283

Keso de Bola – P169 to P539

Spaghetti – P19 to P92

Macaroni – P18.75 to P98.65

Spaghetti sauce – P22 to P84.20

Tomato sauce – P12.25 to P78.25

Creamer – P52 to P75

*Depending on the brand and weight of the products

Lopez said that Noche Buena products are not subject to price control and the new SRP would be the last for the year.

“They are also not part of basic products and prime commodities. Companies are the ones issuing SRPs,” he stressed. “DTI’s role is to ensure they don’t overprice, by reviewing cost increases, and convincing companies not to pass entire cost increases to price of finished products.”

Meanwhile, Laban Konsyumer Inc. President Victoriano Mariano Dimagiba define that annual rate of inflation for the food index fell by 1.3 percent last month and was reported at .3 percent in August 2019.

“Given these positive numbers, the DTI should not preempt issuing public statements that there will be increase in the SRP of Noche Buena products,” said Dimagiba.

Dimagiba is a former DTI Undersecretary for consumer welfare turned consumer advocate and the Laban Konsyumer Inc. is the leading consumer advocacy group.

Dimagiba stated that DTI should focus on studying how much it should pass on to the consumers the positive inflation in terms of lowering the SRP.

He also added that the raw materials of the products had remained stable and lower electricity and diesel prices for the past 3 to 5 months.

LKI President urged the Philippine Association of Meat Processors Inc. that not to increase the prices of processed ham ranging from 500 grams to 1 kg of Chinese sweet ham and consumers continue to fear the risk of contaminated ASF pork. (Cate Pallarco/IAMIGO/CNS)

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