By Kris Crismundo

PRICE MONITORING. Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Alfredo Pascual (in white), Senator Mark Villar (left), and DTI Assistant Secretary Amanda Nograles conduct a price and supply monitoring of Noche Buena items at a supermarket in Divisoria, Manila on Nov. 29, 2023. The DTI on Tuesday (Dec. 12, 2023) called on retailers to adhere to the price guide on Noche Buena items after it received reports of prices higher than those set by manufacturers. (PNA photo by Yancy Lim)

MANILA – The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) called on retailers to adhere to the price guide on Noche Buena items after it received reports of prices higher than those set by manufacturers.

DTI Secretary Alfredo Pascual met with manufacturers on Dec. 11 after reports that the prices of queso de bola, fruit cocktail, ham, all-purpose cream, and mayonnaise were sold above the indicated prices in the Noche Buena Price Guide released by the department on Nov. 22.

“As part of our commitment to ensure that Noche Buena items remain affordable and of good quality this holiday season, we are intensifying our price monitoring efforts all over the country. Through this meeting with manufacturers, we aim to assure consumers that the DTI remains at the forefront of ensuring that the rights of consumers are protected,” Pascual said in a statement Tuesday.

Earlier, he explained that the prices of goods indicated in the Noche Buena Price Guide are suggested retail prices by manufacturers for their products.

“The way this will operate, if there are retailers that are selling higher than what the manufacturers have specified, and our monitors are able to detect this deviation, we will call the attention of the manufacturers so the manufacturers will help to take care dealing with the retailer selling their products higher than their suggested retail price,” Pascual said. “That is what the price guide is for – that consumers will be informed so they may exercise their right to choose.”

During the meeting, manufacturers assured him that they would verify the reports of higher-than-the-set retail prices for Noche Buena products with their partner retailers, and intensify their own price and supply monitoring efforts to ensure that their products adhere to the set price guides.

The manufacturers also assured that the supply of Noche Buena goods is sufficient until the end of the holiday season. (PNA)