DTI sets out to determine fair flour prices | Inquirer Business
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DTI sets out to determine fair flour prices

/ 09:43 PM December 05, 2011

The Department of Trade and Industry is bent on determining whether local flour is fairly priced, considering current world wheat prices, and has asked bakers and flour millers to submit data on their operations.

Trade Undersecretary Zenaida Maglaya said bakers would need to support their claims that local flour was priced too high, vis-a-vis wheat prices. Submitting their acquisition costs would be one way to do this.

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She said bakers were supposed to submit their flour purchase data to the DTI last week, but only one company—Gardenia Bakeries Philippines Inc.—complied with the request.

“Gardenia is hardly representative of the industry since it uses only premium flour for its bread products. We want other bakers, including community bakers, to also submit their data to us,” Maglaya said. “They have to help us build a case so we can have better persuasive power when we deal with the millers. We’ve also asked the millers to submit their ex-mill price. So far, not all of them have submitted.”

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The DTI expects to have all the data it needs from both bakers and millers within the week, Maglaya said.

In a joint statement issued last week, the Philippine Baking Industry Group, Filipino-Chinese Bakers Association Inc. and the Philippine Federation of Bakeries Associations Inc. said they would turn to overseas flour suppliers because local flour was still priced too high, considering the decline in wheat prices seen in recent past months.

According to data from the United States Wheat Associates, wheat prices had dropped to $392 per metric ton (MT), a 25-percent decline from $526 per MT in February. Despite this, prices of local premium flour remained on the P900-P930 range for a 25-kilogram bag.

Buying flour from other countries has become a practical option, the groups said.

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TAGS: Business, Department of Trade and Industry, flour pricing, Philippines
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