Marcos tasks DA exec to meet with egg producers, traders to address price surge
President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has ordered Department of Agriculture (DA) Undersecretary Domingo Panganiban to meet with egg producers and traders to determine why prices of chicken eggs have surged in recent weeks despite enough supply.
The President, who also heads the DA, made this instruction in a Cabinet meeting as the government looks to implement interventions to increase agricultural productivity and ensure the availability of nutritious food at affordable prices.
Marcos has sought an explanation as to why egg prices have increased in recent days, pointing to the widening gap between farm gate and retail prices, benefiting mainly the traders.
"We determined that the increase in the price of eggs is not commensurate to the increase in production cost," Marcos said.
"So we will have to have a look to see how to control that because we cannot explain almost one-half of the profit margin that we are seeing. We cannot attribute it to cost," the President pointed out.
Based on the DA's price watch as of January 13, medium-sized eggs retail at P9 each, compared to P6.90 in December 2022. The DA said eggs should just retail between P7 to P7.50 per piece given its farm gate prices. Reports show that eggs are being sold as high as P9.60 per piece.
To address the situation, the agriculture department has earlier reconvened the Price and Volume Watch Committee and Advisory Groups for Livestock and Poultry to closely watch the prices of eggs across the country.
In an interview on January 14, DA Assistant Secretary Kristine Evangelista said the agency is eliminating "certain layers of traders" to bring down prices of chicken eggs.
"We are coordinating with [Philippine] Egg Board also to see the supply situation, and if there are bottlenecks. Right now, what we are doing also is to eliminate certain layers of traders because that will also help bring down the price," said Evangelista in a media forum.
"Hopefully, mas maganda ang production also of the eggs. There are some challenges that our egg producers are faced with that is now being addressed by our Bureau of Animal Industry," the DA official pointed out.
The DA, in its report to Malacanang, said the farmgate price of medium chicken eggs is pegged at P6.97 per piece, 7.89 percent higher than the price in December 2022. Presidential News Desk