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Rice prices seen stabilizing in Aug.

The National Food Authority (NFA) expects rice prices to start stabilizing only later next month as distribution efforts have not yet been able to help pull down prices.

NFA spokesperson Rebecca Olarte said that due to persistent rains across the country, most of the rice shipments have yet to be delivered across all cities and provinces.

As of Thursday last week, of the 250,000 metric tons (MT) of rice that were imported from Vietnam and Thailand, less than 5 percent are being sold in the market.

'There has really been no effect yet [on the prices],' Olarte said. 'Our estimate is that by mid-August, NFA rice would already have an effect. The problem right now is the weather.'

Records from the agency's marketing department showed that half of the 17 administrative regions in the country already received rice shipments, although at minimal volumes.

Rice varieties being sold by the grains agency are priced at P27 and P32 per kilogram depending on the quality, while current retail prices of regular-milled and well-milled rice are P40.57 and P44.21 a kilogram, respectively.

To make rice more accessible, the agency reactivated some of its retail outlets inside barangay food terminals (BTF).

As of last week, there are 76 NFA rice outlets in BTFs nationwide.

These outlets get an allocation of five to 35 bags per week. There are BTFs in Benguet, Kalinga, Masbate, Camarines Sur, Camarines Norte, Albay, Cavite, Davao del Sur, Davao Occidental, General Santos, North Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, as well as in Caraga and some parts of Metro Manila.

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Publication:Philippines Daily Inquirer (Makati City, Philippines)
Geographic Code:9PHIL
Date:Jul 9, 2018
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