Bantay Palengke, an advocacy network focused on food and household goods, today called on the Department of Agriculture to immediately intervene on the current upward trend on the price of onions.
According to Bantay Palengke Convenor Lester Codog, “We have monitored that onions are now hovering around 200 pesos per kilo when it was just around 100 a week ago. In terms of tumpukan, this means around 6-8 small onions for 50 pesos which usually just cost around 20 pesos. This is another burden for ordinary Filipinos that can be nipped in the bud if the DA, through the Bureau of Plant Industry, acts swiftly.”
Codog added that they have checked on onion farmers and most of them have already sold their produce to middlemen and traders.
“If this is the case, the price should already be going down. We suspect that hoarders are creating an artificial shortage so they can sell the onions at a higher price. The government should not allow these things as it can be considered as price manipulation,” he explained.
Codog continued, “We are hoping that relevant government agencies will be able to act urgently on what we suspect as market manipulation. We hope they check on the warehouses of suspected onion hoarders. We should not allow syndicates to feast on the hardships of Filipino farmers and consumers.”