Pandesal, pump prices set upswing

A double whammy of sorts in terms of high prices looms as oil companies project this week another round of increase by P3 per liter for diesel and kerosene while the cost of pandesal is also rising.
A slight increase also awaits gasoline at P0.80 to P1.10 per liter, based on oil market monitoring in the past days.

The substantial hikes follow a P6 increase in diesel price and a little less on gasoline last 11 October.

The surge in petroleum products was primarily due to the OPEC+ decision to cut down the production of oil products, aside from the increasing power of the United States trampling the Philippine peso.

The OPEC+ member states have cut their output starting in November after its recent first face-to-face meeting in Vienna, Austria.

The group said the decision was based on the “uncertainty that surrounds the global economy and oil market outlooks.”

P4 per pack increase

The Philippine Federation of Bakers’ Association Inc. is seeking a P4 price increase for Pinoy Tasty and Pinoy Pandesal as community bakeries complained of difficulty in selling their own bread at very low prices.

“Currently, the price of Pinoy Pandesal remains very low at P23.50 a pack of 10 pieces and P38.50 for Pinoy Tasty,” PhilBaking spokesperson Chito Chavez said.

He stressed it is too hard to compete with the price of the bread of their member companies The French Baker, Gardenia Philippines and Julie’s Bakeshop.

With this, Chavez said prices of Pinoy Pandesal and Tasty should increase at least by P4.

Pinoy Tasty, Pinoy Pandesal, as well as Harinang Pinoy are Department of Trade and Industry initiatives to provide affordable options for Filipinos.

PhilBaking members — including Gardenia, French Baker, Uncle George, Tiffany, and Marby — produce generic bread while Harinang Pinoy is a DTI joint project with the Philippine Association of Flour Millers.

The measure is part of the corporate social responsibility thrust of both the government and the private associations to offer affordable commodities.

The scheme hurts community bakeries, Chavez said.

“The CSR project continues to affect our sales, the Pinoy Pandesal price has been deemed as the benchmark price as customers compare its price to those being sold in community bakeries. It also brings confusion,” Chavez explained.

Normally, price increase requests from manufacturers go through strict evaluation from the Department of Trade and Industry.

Carol Sanchez, who also serves as the chief of staff of Trade Secretary Fred Pascual, said “DTI’s Consumer Protection group is studying the request for an adjustment and will look for optimal arrangements.”

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