The Philippine government's inability to curb smuggling of food products has angered food producers leading to a growing alliance between swine, poultry, fish, onion, and rice producers.
The original strike planned by the swine and poultry associations, was called off after the Philippine government gave assurances to deal with the smuggling problem on Philippine markets. Now, fisheries advocacy group Tambuyong, onion growers association Kasamne and rice farmers group Pakisama have joined the pork and poultry breeder associations amid growing discontent with the government’s approach to the problem.
The alliance is planning a five-day ‘market holiday’, to signal their distress and discontent. Representatives of the association say that since the government’s assurances that it would deal with the problem, the situation has only become worse. The associations claim that proof of smuggling is rampant and visible everywhere. It was pointed out that one can buy pink salmon and dory on the wet market, fishes banned by law as not being indigenous species saleable on the market.
The food producers alliance is demanding greater transparency of ship manifests, 100% inspection of ships, increases in the reference price of goods, and further evaluation and clean-up of the accredited importers list.