Luzon has oversupply of frozen chicken, pork due to coronavirus pandemic

Luzon has an oversupply of frozen pork and chicken, as restaurants and hotels buy less meat due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

Data from the National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS) showed that from June 24, 2019 to June 22, 2020, the combined inventory of frozen dressed chicken in Metro Manila, Central Luzon, and Calabarzon surged by 60%, while local production skyrocketed by 156.44%.

Frozen pork imports went down by 10.8%, but local production surged by 355.35%. (READ: Double trouble: PH pork industry faces coronavirus, ASF)

Metro Manila is the principal market for broilers, while Central Luzon and Calabarzon are top producers in the country.

Coronavirus, too much imports

Hotels and restaurants bought less meat during the pandemic, as the industry struggles to survive with fewer customers.

The government’s inability to regulate imports and local production didn’t help the situation either.

The United Broiler Raisers Association (UBRA) wrote an open letter to Agriculture Secretary William Dar on June 15, to temporarily suspend the importation of poultry so that their produce can be absorbed by the local market.

UBRA also called on the Department of Agriculture to push for the suspension of imports whenever needed.

The Luzon Pork Producers Federation of the Philippines earlier raised the alarm over the over-importation of agricultural goods during the pandemic, to bring prices down.

Prices

The overabundance of frozen meat supply in Luzon would suggest lower prices in the markets, but the DA increased the suggested retail price (SRP) for pork in Metro Manila, citing higher production costs.

The SRP of pork pigue and kasimwas increased to P230 per kilo (kg) from P190, and liempo to P250/kg from P225.

UBRA data showed that chicken prices are slightly down. As of July 3, the price of regular-sized broilers decreased from P89.8 to P88.8 per kilogram in the previous week. Prime-sized broiler prices fell by around a peso, too, from P91.62 to P90.71 per kilogram. – Rappler.com