Prices of sardines, processed milk, condiments and canned meat are up in the fourth round of increases in the suggested retail prices (SRP) of some commodities as released by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) last September 30.
This comes on the heels of the announcement last Friday of a .9 percent inflation in September.
Topping the list of year-to-date price increases are 27 brands or stock keeping units (SKUs) of canned sardines, 26 brands of processed milk, 26 brands of condiments, 10 brands of canned meat and 14 brands of iodize salt.
For coffee refill, six brands raised prices and one popular brand of 3-in-1 coffee increased its prices twice for the year.
Based on the computation of Laban Konsyumer Inc., the price hikes in sardines range from 25 centavos to P1 per can depending on the brand and size.
Coffee refill prices have increased by a range of 20 to 65 centavos while a popular 3-in-1 brand of raised its price for the second time this year, to 50 centavos from last June’s P1 hike, bringing the total increase to P1.50 per sachet.
One brand of noodles raised its price by 45 centavos.
Prices of luncheon meat, meat loaf and beef loaf of a leading brand increased by 30 centavos to P1.
Vinegar prices are up 35 and 75 centavos depending on the size; while patis is up 80 centavos to P1.25. The price of soy sauce is up 45 to 85 centavos.
LKI earlier said there is no basis for an increase in the SRPs of coffee, noodles and sardines despite claims of manufacturers that raw material costs are up.
LKI president Vic Dimagiba said research shows costs of raw materials of tin, coffee, wheat for noodle, tamban for sardines as well as the foreign exchange rate and power rates are either flat or lower for the year.
He said from the third quarter of 2018 to June 2019, most brands of sardines had increased prices by no less than twice or thrice.
Dimagiba cited international data for raw materials to back his claim.
For coffee, over the period 2014 to 2019, the costs are at their lowest, from $4.80 per kilogram (kg) to $2. 50 per kg, according to Dimagiba citing Coffee Mundi.
For tin, prices in 2019 had decreased by 14.43 percent, he added.
Dimagiba said based on the Minneapolis Wheat Exchange data for 2019, wheat prices have gone done. Tamban prices based on data of the Philippine Statistics Authority Zambonga also showed a downward pattern for the year.
Monthly wholesale prices of tamban peaked in November last year to P38.31 per kg, falling to P28.67 in February before hitting P40.25 but prices have dropped P37.46 last month.
Dimagiba also argued the peso remains firm versus the US dollar at 52, and even appreciated to 51 beginning the third quarter.
He added even power rates had gone down for five consecutive months.
For canned meats, the DTI was acting on the request of manufacturers to increase their prices ahead of the impact of the African swine flu plaguing the hog industry.
DTI also assured the increase in the price of sardines was minimal.