Oliver Bugarin 5 0 0 4 min to read

PH salt supply stabilization could take two to three years: DA

According to the Department of Agriculture (DA), it may take two to three years for the nation to have a reliable salt supply.

Agriculture Undersecretary Domingo Panganiban stated in a Laging Handa briefing that he had directed the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) to ascertain the breakdown of costs for the prior PHP100 million allocation for salt manufacturing.

“Alin kung nasaan ‘yung pera para malaman namin namang kung paano gagastusin, dahil kinakailangan matulungan yung small fisherfolks natin na nagpapalaki at nagpo-produce ng asin sa buong Pilipinas dito sa Central Luzon, sa Pangas

Panganiban stated that the DA would be able to distribute its aid to fisherfolk in the upcoming months after they get the information on the assigned fund.

It may take two to three years before we stabilize, but if we receive the PHP100 million from the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, we may begin distributing salt to our fishermen right away in the second half of 2022.

The BFAR previously stated that there is statistics, while it needs to be verified, that the Philippines’ salt business depends on imports 93% of the time.

In the meantime, Panganiban stated that there is hoarding in the sugar supply after finding supplies during its ongoing probe.

“We are seeing in the investigations conducted by the Bureau of Customs, SRA, and DA, as well as the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), that we are saying a lot in Quezon City, San Jose del Monte, Pampanga, Pangasinan, Misamis Oriental, in Bukidnon, and ito ang nagpapatunay na hindi artipisyal, ‘yung ano, kundi tala

Upon proof, according to Panganiban, the DA would seize the stockpiled supplies and make it available to supermarkets and small vendors so they could sell it for less.

The DA is currently combining white onion stocks nationwide to see if there is indeed a supply constraint, in addition to the supply of salt and sugar.

While people have trouble finding white onions in marketplaces, some retailers have made them available online.

Nine trucks of white onions, purportedly from Metro Manila, were allegedly detained by officials in Misamis Oriental, according to a previous report from the DA.

According to Panganiban, the Bureau of Customs will decide whether or not these are being stockpiled or smuggled.

Senator Imee Marcos earlier requested an inventory of white onions as part of her plan to build cold storage facilities to help boost local output.

Without a thorough inventory, she claimed, it would be impossible to develop an importation strategy that would both satisfy consumer demand and relieve local farmers of the burden of low farmgate pricing.

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