THE WAY FORWARD │ Level Up Philippine Agriculture!

Agri chief orders “One DA family” to allot resources to buy, transport hogs and pork to MM public markets

Author: DA Communications Group | 5 February 2021

Agriculture Secretary William Dar has directed all “One DA” officials to step up efforts by pouring needed resources to stabilize the supply and prices of pork and poultry and other basic food items.

“To support the agricultural and overall economic recovery efforts of the Duterte administration, we need to step up our game and do the needed innovative adjustments in terms of resource utilization and direct it where it is needed,” Dar said during a Management Committee (ManCom) meeting on February 3, 2021, attended physically and virtually by more than four dozens DA officials nationwide.

“Let us remain one and united to confront lingering and emerging challenges, including the current hog supply and pork price issue,” the DA chief added.

“We can start by ensuring the successful implementation of the recently issued Executive Order (EO) No. 124,” he said.

On February 1, 2021, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte issued EO 124, imposing a price ceiling on pork and chicken — at ₱270/kg for kasim/pigue, ₱300/kg for liempo, and ₱160/kg for dressed chicken — for a period of 60 days in Metro Manila public markets.

Secretary Dar thus ordered DA regional executive directors (REDs) to lead in the negotiations with hog producers and logistics partners to bring the surplus supply from Visayas and Mindanao and ASF-free areas or ‘green zones’ in Luzon to major public markets in Metro Manila.

“We have to map-out sources of hogs, lead the negotiations between farmers and traders, and facilitate documentary requirements such as certifications and local transport permits so we can bring in cheaper hogs and pork products immediately to Metro Manila,” he said.

The respective regional directors were also tasked to lead their agribusiness, marketing, and Kadiwa teams — in partnership with other DA bureaus, agencies, and corporations — in the procurement and transport of hogs and pork-in-a-box to Metro Manila.

“We need to mobilize available resources in transporting hogs, and other meat products including reefer vans, trucks, vessels, cold storages,” he said, noting that regional offices are allowed to use/realign DA funds to purchase and transport hogs from regions to Metro Manila.

With said intervention, the agri chief said the “One DA” family will curtail the involvement of unscrupulous traders and viajeros, at the expense of hog raisers and pork consumers.

“While our primary mandate is agricultural development and higher incomes for our farmers and fisherfolk, we are also committed to ensuring availability of affordable food for 109 million Filipinos,” the DA chief concluded. ### (DA StratComms) 

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