By Rjay Zuriaga Castor
Meat inflation, or the pace of increase in the prices of meat products, in the province and city of Iloilo, has observed an upward trend since September this year.
Provincial Statistical Office officer-in-charge Jerry Dolutan said meat inflation in Iloilo has surged to 12.1 percent in October from 9.8 percent in September.
“Mas mataas sa subong ang inflation natun sa karne,” he said in a press conference on Tuesday,
Dolutan provided a breakdown of meat inflation rates in Iloilo for this year: 4.9 percent in January, 3.6 percent in February, 4.4 percent in March, 5.9 in April, 6.7 percent in May, 2.8 percent in June, 0.1 percent in July, and 1.9 percent in August.
Meanwhile, data from the Provincial Veterinarian Office (PVO) showed that as of November 13, the farmgate price of pork in the province is between P320 to P400 per kilo, while the price of live weight pigs varies from P190 to P240.
Darel Tabuada, head of the PVO, explained in a recent interview that the price hikes are influenced by supply and demand dynamics, along with a decrease in the swine product inventory of the province.
Currently, the pork sufficiency of the province stands at 33.12 percent, which according to Tabuada indicates a “shortage” of pork.
The hog inventory, which was at 277,421 heads before the first cases of African swine fever (ASF) in October 2022, has plummeted to 75,478 heads as of November 6 this year, reflecting a 72.79 percent decrease.
Meanwhile, a total of 3.42 million frozen and processed meat products have been shipped into the province from March 2023 to November 13.
The products are sourced out from the province of Aklan (75 heads), Antique (2,257 heads), Guimaras (12 heads), Negros Occidental (9,363 heads), Negros Oriental (2,280 heads), and Oriental Mindoro (1,077 heads).
As for the zone progression, the PVO has already submitted endorsements for Batad, Sta. Barbara, New Lucena, and Barotac Viejo to the Department of Agriculture for an update on their recovery status.
Meanwhile, the documents for the towns of San Miguel, Banate, Lambunao, Concepcion, Leganes, Mina, and Janiuay are still pending at the PVO due to incomplete documentation.
Requirements for zone progression from red to pink include a municipal ordinance or executive order (transitory) adopting the “Bantay ASF sa Barangay” (BABay ASF) program, a farm registry, a summary of ASF history including outbreaks, surveillance, and disease control measures, and a list of swine biosecurity training attended by farmers.