THE AVERAGE farmgate price of palay, or unmilled rice, declined 0.1% week-on-week to P15.55 per kilogram (kg) in the fifth week of November, breaking a two-week run of gains, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said.

The PSA said in its weekly palay and corn price update that the average wholesale price of well-milled rice fell 0.3% week-on-week to P37.20 per kg, while retail prices rose 0.1% to P41.58.

The average wholesale price of regular-milled rice increased 0.2% week-on-week to P33.17 per kg, while retail prices fell 0.03% to P36.66.

“This is natural adjustment towards a new normal value,” Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) Research Fellow Roehlano M. Briones said in a text message when asked to comment. However, he noted monitoring is required before declaring that prices have stabilized.

The price of palay at the farmgate level was pressured in 2019 due to competition from cheap imported rice as a result of the Rice Tariffication Law, or Republic Act No. 11203, which came into force in March.

Year-on-year, the farmgate price declined 22.3%.

The average farmgate price of yellow corn grain rose 0.7% week-on-week, to P11.98 per kg. The average wholesale price increased 0.4% to P21.05. The retail price rose 0.2% to P25.70.

The farmgate price of white corn grain averaged P13.35 per kg, up 0.3% week-on-week. The average wholesale price increased 0.3% to P17, while the average retail price was stable at P26.70. — Vincent Mariel P. Galang