Many meat stalls at the Balintawak Market in Quezon City were closed on Monday morning, James Agustin on GMA News’ Unang Balita reported.
According to vendors, they will just lose money if they will continue to sell pork and dressed chicken at the price ceiling set by the government because traders also give the supplies to them at high prices.
The price cap is P300 per kilo for liempo, P270 per kilo for kasim and pigue, and P160 per kilo for dressed chicken. These prices are imposed for 60 days.
Balintawak Market meat retailer Shella Pareja said the price cap the government has set is too low.
“So ‘yung mga kinukuhanan ko ng baboy, ‘yung mga mismong biyahero o ‘yung traders, sila ‘yung mismong hindi na nanghuli ng baboy, kasi hindi na nila kaya ‘yung presyo. Sobrang baba ‘yung hinihiling ng gobyerno, ‘di ba. So hindi nila kayang ipasa sa amin nang ganoon kababa dahil mataas ang kuha nila sa farm,” she said.
However, before midnight on Sunday, few traders delivered some hogs at Balintawak Market.
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Trader Ramil Baiso decided to sell at P320 per kilo of liempo and P290 per kilo of kasim and pigue, which are both above the price cap.
“Hindi ko kaya [sundin ang price ceiling] gawa ng napakataas ang puhunan. Ang puhunan ko diyan ay P270 [per kilo]. E paano na lang kung ganoon ang bentahan namin, di laki ng lugi ko,” he said.
“Hirap na hirap kaming maghanap ng baboy ngayon. Eh hindi naman kami bumibili ng frozen-frozen diyan. Gusto namin fresh meat talaga. Kaya nahihirapan kami. Eto, paikot-ikot ako. ‘Di ko alam kung saan ako bibili,” said Edmond Futalan from Valenzuela.
Meanwhile, some consumers were forced to buy frozen pork meat at P290 per kilo.
“Wala akong mabili na fresh na baboy kaya dito na lang po,” said Bing Bustos.