A plan to lift the suggested retail price (SRP) scheme for basic necessities and prime commodities by the Department of Trade Industry (DTI) has been backed by a group of food manufacturers.
Philippine Association of Meat Processors Inc. (Pampi) president Felix Tiukinhoy Jr., in a recent statement, lauded the plan of DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez to “deregulate the SRP scheme in order to “reduce bureaucratic procedures.”
“The ongoing practice now is that SRPs of basic necessities and prime commodities are currently set by manufacturers but are subject to evaluation and approval by the DTI,” Tiukinhoy said.
Pampi, through Tiukhinoy, echoed DTI’s stance that setting the SRP “should be a business decision among manufacturers” that “should give consumer[s]the freedom to choose” what would be best for them.
“People will patronize products with good value. On the other hand, they can boycott abusive manufacturers,” he said.
Tiukinhoy added that his group, along with its 35-member companies, is campaigning for good manufacturing practices that would ensure “efficient production” and sound supply chain that would keep products “cost-competitive.”
He expressed the group’s support to the Duterte administration’s campaign to protect every Filipino consumer’s well-being and one way of doing this is to keep prices at a minimum level “without denying legitimate business a fair return on investment.”
“Our meat products, which are considered prime commodities, are price-sensitive and highly competitive,” Tiukinhoy said.
Minor price adjustment among players would mean loss of market share and competitiveness, Tiukinhoy said.
He added that they do not see the importance of a government-regulated SRP.
“We fully agree with Secretary Lopez that manufacturers of basic necessities and prime commodities are hesitant to increase prices for fear of losing market share,” he said.
Pampi is said to be a P300-billion industry that provides direct and indirect employment to over 200,000 people across the country.