New task force to go after pork price profiteers

Published February 4, 2021, 3:17 PM

by Betheena Unite

Time to run after persons behind the unreasonably high prices of pork in the country.

(Keith Bacongco / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

A government task force on economic intelligence dubbed “Econ Intel” was formed to go after profiteers, price manipulators, hoarders, and smugglers, Agriculture chief William Dar said.

The creation of the group, Dar said, was approved by President Duterte during a Cabinet meeting Wednesday.

It will go after unscrupulous traders, viajeros and wholesalers “who have unreasonably jacked up the prices of hogs and pork, hovering at more than P400 per kilogram that persisted even beyond the 2020 Christmas season and despite reduced demand.”

“Pork prices should have already gone down after the holidays, but they did not. Clearly, some persons along the food value chain are making a lot of money,” Dar said.

Before the 2020 Christmas season, average prices ranged from P270/kg for pork pigue and kasim to P300/kg for liempo which served as the basis for the price ceiling approved by President Duterte under Executive Order No. 124.

A price cap on dressed chicken at P160/kg was also imposed to maintain prices of said food item, as consumers shifted away from pork.

The Econ Intel task force is co-chaired by the Department of Agriculture and Department of Trade and Industry.

It is composed of the Department of Justice, Department of Interior and Local Government, National Bureau of Investigation, Philippine National Police, Bureau of Customs, Philippine Competition Commission, National Security Council, and National Intelligence Coordinating Agency.

 
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