PH under state of calamity due to swine fever, typhoons, price manipulation

Agriculture Secretary William Dar said the country is now under a state of calamity because of a scorching rally in pork, chicken, vegetable, and fruit prices due to the persistence of African swine fever in farms, typhoons that devastated crops, and alleged price manipulation by traders.

Pork prices have risen by 55 percent from last year, while vegetable prices have skyrocketed by as much as 275 percent.

This has prompted the Department of Agriculture and other local and national agencies to recommend the implementation of a price freeze to the President, urging him to sign an executive order that would put a price ceiling on key food items as Filipino households tightened their purse strings due to exorbitant food prices.

The agency wanted the price ceiling at 270 to 300 pesos a kilogram for pork and 160 pesos a kilo for chicken. These commodities are currently being sold at an average of 400 pesos and 170 pesos a kilo, respectively, in public markets.

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