There are 155 out of 658 rice retailers in Negros Occidental who are compliant with the rice price cap, the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist reported on Friday, September 15.
However, Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson expects the number of compliant retailers to increase with the government’s release of P15,000 subsidies to those who are enforcing the price cap set under President Ferdinand Marcos’ Executive Order No. 39.
The Department of Trade and Industry is set to provide more compliant retailers with subsidies.
Under EO 39, the mandated price of regular milled rice is P41 per kilo while well-milled rice should be sold at P45 per kilo.
The OPA monitoring in Negros showed regular milled rice being sold from P41 to P56 and well-milled rice at P45 to P61.
The price cap will be temporary, Lacson said.
Meanwhile, the National Food Authority is encouraging local governments to augment its buying price for palay to help rice farmers.
The NFA is buying at P19 a kilo and it has a program where an LGU can add P1 to P3 a kilo to the buying price. They are asking the provincial government to join the program, Lacson said.
Lacson said he will have to check if the province still has funds for it. “The province could join the program if not this year, next year”, he said.
He was told that Valladolid has committed P1 per kilo, and Hinoba-an and Sipalay are also thinking of doing the same, Lacson said.*