The price ceiling set by the government early February was effective in pulling down high retail prices that were manipulated by traders who take advantage of consumers.
Department of Agriculture (DA) Assistance Secretary Noel Reyes said on Friday that the price ceiling is meant to set an ideal range.
As the Executive Order 124 nears expiration (60 days after the February 8 implementation), DA reports indicated not all public markets applied the government-set prices.
“While it was not met, at least the prices were pulled down,” Reyes said.
Prices for pork and pork products were highest during the Christmas holiday in 2020. It was not flagged at the time as the DA understood the high demand.
When prices remained high in January 2021, DA Secretary William Dar proposed the Executive Order.
The 60-day law imposed the price ceiling for a kilogram of kasim (pork shoulder) and pigue (pork butt) at P270, P300 per kilogram for liempo (pork belly), and P160 per kilogram for dressed chicken.
Before the EO was implemented in February 8, some vendors were retailing pork products for as much as P400 per kilogram.
In DA’s market watch as of Friday, kasim retailed between P310 to P350 per kilogram; liempo was sold at P340 to P360; while fully dressed chicken retailed at P150 to P170.
Reyes shared that while the DA works on controlling the retail prices, it also tapped its regional offices to send surplus meat products to the National Capital Region.
As of Thursday, the DA has already transported 220,481 live hogs to areas in Luzon with high or unmet market demands.
A total of 9,089 hogs and 36,525 kilograms of carcass were delivered from various regions to Metro Manila, a DA report cited.