The National Food Authority (NFA) will strictly impose the suggested retail price (SRP) for milled rice, prescribed labeling of rice boxes and price tagging to protect the rights of consumers in Palawan.
Ma. Lewina Tolentino, NFA provincial manager, said Tuesday the implementation will be effective 15 days after the publication of the memorandum circular in a newspaper and upon registration to the University of the Philippines (UP) Law Center.
“Ang implication nyan ay hindi na masyadong mamahal ang bigas sa palengke. Pero ‘yong sa farmers hindi naman nagmahal kasi nandyan ang NFA para bumili ng palay nila,” she said.
She said the imposition of the SRP will help control soaring rice prices in the markets that are hurting poor families.
Tolentino said Agriculture Sec. Emmanuel Piñol signed the MR on October 24 which set the guidelines on the SRPs for the different kinds of milled rice, prescribed labeling and price tagging for compliance by all grains businessmen and rice retailers.
Based on the circular, the new policy aims to establish an SRP for all milled rice and promote consumers’ rights and welfare through fair marketing practices.
Milled rice is classified into regular milled rice (RMR), well-milled rice (WMR) premium grade rice and special.
The labels shall also identify whether the rice is imported or local.
The NFA Council implements the following SRP for rice:
- Imported well-milled – P39
- Imported premium (PG1) – P43
- Imported premium (PG2) – P40
- Local regular-milled – P39
- Local well-milled – P44
- Local premium grade – P47
- Special rice – no SRP
The NFA guidelines also state that rice shall be classified as regular-milled if it contains about 20-40 percent bran streaks; well-milled with one to 19 percent bran streaks; premium grade are rice varieties that contain a maximum of five percent broken kernels with 0-19 percent bran streaks, while special rice is glutinous, aromatic, pigmented, japonica, micronutrient-dense rice, including varieties with excellent eating and nutritive quality.
In the prescribed labeling, the font that should be used on rice boxes should be the black bold font over a white background for RMR and WMR.
The size of the texts will be five centimeters (height), 30-centimeter width and 15-centimeter height of the labeling card.
Special rice should be over a sky-blue background and premium grade rice should be over a light-yellow background.
A monitoring team will be led by the NFA with the Department of Industry (DTI), the Department of Agriculture (DA), other line agencies, and local government units.
The MR also imposes penalties for erring rice sellers based on Presidential Decree 4 and Republic Act 8751 and the Revised Rules and Regulations of NFA on Grains Business.
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