Canned meat prices to go up

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    Scene at a wet market. (PHOTO BY RHOY COBILLA)

    The Philippine Association of Meat Processors Inc. (PAMPI) warned of a 10 to 14-percent increase in the prices of canned meat products following the ban on imported poultry and mechanically-deboned meat (MDM) from Brazil which has pushed their raw material prices.

    Rex Agarrado, PAMPI spokesperson, said Brazil supplies 20 to 25 percent of the country’s requirement for MDM.

    A ban on similar products from Australia on concerns over possible bird flu contamination further affects the sustainability of supply of raw materials for local food processors.

    He said the industry may no longer hold off any price increase due to scarce raw materials from Brazil.

    Agarrado said Brazil offers competitive prices compared with Europe and the United States whose MDM and poultry products are at least 30-percent higher.

    He said as of August 14, the country’s inventory of MDM was good for only 30 to 45 days.

    PAMPI questioned the ban since China which reported the presence of SARS-COV 2, the causative agent of COVID-19, in a surface sampling conducted of chicken meat it imported from Brazil, did not impose a prohibition.

    PAMPI said China found the virus RNA or nucleic acid did not cause any infection on humans.

    “China advised the source factories of the sample shipments to be cautious but it did not impose a ban on Brazil imports,” Agarrado said.

    “PAMPI recognizes and supports our government actions and regulations that will protect the health and safety of our consuming public. In the sourcing of our raw materials, we have always followed internationally accepted and standards and have always allowed ourselves to be governed by science not politics,” Agarrado said.

    Latest data available from the Bureau of Animal Industry showed the Philippines imported a total of 159,745,948 kg. of chicken MDM between January and July, of which 825,000 kg. or 0.5 percent came from Australia while 39,250,498 kg. or 24.5 percent came from Brazil.
    In 2019, for the total 219,061,866 kg. of MDM that were imported by the country, Australia supplied 2,098,840 kg. or 0.95 percent while Brazil provided 40,684,752 kg. or 18.5 percent.