Solon pushes for agri database to prevent price manipulation
Posted: 2023-Jan-18 15.29.18 UTC+0800
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MANILA – Senator Sherwin Gatchalian is pushing for an agricultural information system (AIS), which will serve as database to deter price manipulation of food prices, such as in the case of onion, which has recently seen record levels.
Gatchalian said the AIS will gather all information, which could deter any artificial shortages that hoarders may possibly take advantage of for profiteering purposes.
In filing Senate Bill 1374, or the Agriculture Information System Act, he said the measure seeks to establish an AIS which will serve as an online computer database where information on the demand for specific agricultural and fisheries commodities is gathered and uploaded simultaneously with the production data from farmers in every barangay.
"Lumalabas na hindi natutukan ng maigi ng Department of Agriculture (DA) ang supply at demand ng sibuyas at umaasa lang sila sa datos na nilalabas ng Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA). Dapat may regular na stock balance at price monitoring na isinasagawa ang DA sa lahat ng produktong pang-agrikultura na makakatulong sa polisiya at tamang tiyempo kung kailan mag-aangkat ng mga ito nang hindi maaapektuhan nang husto ang lokal na produksyon ng ating mga magsasaka at makakatulong sa mga konsyumer sa pamamagitan ng mas mababang presyo ng pagkain (It appears that the DA failed to monitor the supply and demand of onions as they rely mostly on the data released by the PSA. There must be a regular check on the stocks and price monitoring by the DA on all agricultural products that will not affect the local production of our farmers and also help consumers with lower prices)," Gatchalian said.
He added that consumers will buy their products from areas where there is enough supply and bring them to Kadiwa centers to avoid food spoils.
According to Gatchalian, the creation of AIS would also prevent unwarranted importation of farm products that could unduly impact the competitiveness of local farmers.
He said the measure will not only to improve the productivity of farmers but ensure the adequacy of food supply in retail centers. (PNA)