Consumer advocacy group Laban Konsyumer Inc. (LKI) has warned that the continuous oil gas price increases would eventually trigger price hikes in basic goods and necessities even as he urged consumers to reject brands that would raise prices. 

In a statement, LKI P President Victorio Mario Dimagiba pointed out that the series of oil price hikes will impact on transportation cost and higher prices of basic necessities and prime commodities.

LKI President and convenor Atty. Victorio Mario Dimagiba

“The upcoming big oil price hike will definitely influence and affect the increases in transportation and other products and services as there will be a chain reaction,” said Dimagiba. 

Already, Dimagiba said, that a group of supermarket operators has warned that their businesses have been suffering. He quoted a group’s official, who claimed that 7 to 9 manufacturers already told him about upcoming price increase. 

The supermarket group has discussed about financial losses, but Dimagiba also noted that they have actually stayed online and operational, and thrived in a pandemic setting where people will always still rely on them for food during the global crisis.

“It is not fair for the supermarkets to effect a price increase on their products just like that, because first of all, they can reject the notice of price increases. This must also be heavily regulated since we are still recovering, and consumers must be protected from high prices in the market,” he said. 

On one hand, he said, consumers have the power to choose from many different brands and buy the most reasonably priced items.

”I am advocating this because consumers have been sending me already ideas, and instances where there are big brands doing promos even in this time of pandemic, showing as proof that food is not a suffering business in this crisis,” he added. 

He cited a large company that is running a promotion for its chicken products to create demand for consumers.

According to Dimagiba, the bigger companies are not struggling and still doing promos. 

He also revealed that different brands of bread, noodles, toothpaste are already warning of impending price hikes of their products.  

The consumer advocate who earlier called for a “pork holiday” has urged supermarkets and consumers to reject brands that are raising prices. 

“The components of the product must be examined and inspected very well, and you should look at the prices. Over the past two years, in the pandemic, looking at materials and inventory of finished goods, looking at canned goods, shelf life is 6 to eight months, so we are not going to lose supply of sardines due to long shelf life,” he added. He reiterated that supermarkets and food producers were able to survive during the pandemic. “The production of food did not stop even throughout the pandemic. The supermarket and food industry did not suffer during the pandemic because while everybody was at home, the food business thrived and grew. Thus, you should not increase the prices of your food products, because these businesses were not suffering as food remained strong throughout the entire pandemic,” he pointed out.