BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
Negro farmers are asking for the intervention of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. to raise the Suggested Retail Price (SRP) of sugar from its current P70 per kilo to at least P85-P90, due to the devastation wrought by Typhoon Paeng.
Manuel Lamata, President of the United Sugar Producers Federation (UNIFED) said the increase in the sugar SRP will help farmers recover from the damage caused by the recent typhoon which flooded hundreds of sugar farms from north to southern Negros Island and the rest of the Visayas.
He said UNIFED is asking PBBM to consider raising the price of millgate sugar by at least P60 to stabilize the price at P3,000 per LKG, which is currently around the P2,900 level. .
Lamata said millgate prices were already falling before the typhoon, but after seeing the damage from Paeng, we need President Marcos’ immediate help to increase the SRP until our farmers can recover.
While sugar prices have fallen, “fertilizer and fuel prices are still on the rise, and compounded by typhoon damage, our sugar farmers will struggle to survive this time around,” Lamata added.
In a statement, the UNIFED president said he was confident that PBBM, as head of the agriculture department, would understand the situation as the typhoon not only claimed lives but also cost millions , even billions in damage to the agricultural industry.*