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Bacolod City, PhilippinesSaturday, September 7, 2013
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Group warns of
‘intense rice crisis'

Despite assurances from the Department of Agriculture and the National Food Authority that the country has ample supply of the Filipino people's staple food, the Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas yesterday warned of an intense rice crisis for which it blames the failure of the Aquino administration to dismantle rice cartels and address high rice prices.

The skyrocketing price of rice will trigger an intense rice crisis that would lead to the eruption of the country's social volcano, the group's deputy secretary general Willy Marbella said in a KMP press release.

Marbella said rice prices are steadily increasing for almost two months now and the DA has done nothing to pull down and control prices.

The KMP claimed that the retail price of rice in the local market on Monday increased to P35 to P37 or a P3 to P5 increase from the P32 to P34 during the first round of price increases in early July.

Even the NFA's so-called rice price monitoring in public markets is an all for show, targeting rice retailers and not the monopolistic cartels. Aquino's government is all bark, no bite, Marbella said in the press release.

The KMP reiterated calls on both houses of Congress to immediately conduct an investigation on what it described as “artificial palay shortage” hatched by rice cartles and the reported rice importation from Vietnam last April that was allegedly overpriced by P457 million, the press release said.*


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