Palay prices hit 13-week high
The average farmgate price of palay in the country has risen to a 13-week high in the last week of December while rice prices remained stable as both local and imported supply remained sufficient.
Price monitoring reports by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) showed the prevailing price for dry palay at P16.50 a kilo, up 4.24 percent from the same period a year ago.
Historical PSA data showed that this was the highest average quotation since the P17.03 a kilo recorded in the third week of September last year.
Retail prices of rice in the market have also stabilized. A kilo of regular milled rice remained at P36.17 while a kilo of well-milled rice slightly declined to P40.89.
One reason for the rise in palay prices could be the lower volume of rice imports that entered the country during the period. By December, only 97,000 metric tons (MT) of rice were left to arrive, bringing the country’s total imports for 2020 at 2.06 million MT.
With the uncertainties brought by the coronavirus pandemic, countries all over the world including the Philippines have begun to stockpile more food supplies, especially staples.
The Department of Agriculture has encouraged farmers to plant more rice as it aims to increase the country’s rice inventory.
Meanwhile, imports for the coming year are expected to taper down as nations are already beginning to compete for stocks.
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