I have a sari-sari store. For those who aren't from around here (in this country), it's a convenience/retail store. I've opened barely a month ago and I must say, it's hard work. It's no joke to open up such a low-end business . Inventory and price monitoring is a pain in the neck. In the short span of time that my little store is in operation, I've seen consistent and drastic price increases across all basic commodities. Sometimes, I don't even know if it's still reasonable , considerate and humane to have a 1 peso profit margin. A lot of people depend on sari-sari stores for their purchases and I can only feel empathy for us all who stretch our budget just so we can spend within our means. It started out with pan de sal, then cooking oil, then rice... and now, everything else is having a price increase. Though I know it's inevitable, I still believe that this is manageable. Only that, we lack strict implementation on century-old (allow me to exaggerate) policies. It's very frustrating that this is happening in an economically-challenged country as ours. What could be worse? I can't even think of any. I think these "guys" prepping for the presidential elections this early should do something about this rather than busying themselves in organizing political campaigns disguised as "congratulations, graduates!" ads. People who are in power whether as a result of an electoral process or a capitalist business venture, should help out the government and the people survive this trying times. Just a little over a week ago, I can buy rice for 28 pesos (of good quality) and sell it for 30 pesos. Now, the one selling for 34 pesos looks just a bit nicer than NFA rice. And while the government is assuring us that there is enough supply to get us through the "ber" months, the groceries prove that there really is lack of supply (and by that I mean, supplies are not available because of various reasons, be it insufficient harvest, too high demand, or as a result of hoarding by rice cartels). And the media isn't helping by bombarding us all the more with bloated and sensationalized news that rice purchases will eventually be regulated/controlled per household. We are Filipinos, we worship rice. A lot of us can survive without meat but can hardly eat without rice in the table. So what do you expect? Bingo!
Panic buying. At least those who have the extra money to spend. So now, the restaurants are seemingly unaffected by the situation, because they can certainly panic-buy. I hope the media finds a way to attack the issue from a different perspective and devise creative ways to influence the people to stay calm and act appropriately relative to the situation and not fan the flames of panic that is now consuming all of us. Instead of reminding us every now and then that there is lack of supply, why don't they (the media) research on and show alternative ways of solving the problem? Or at the very least, refrain from exaggerating stories. I know it's not their job to solve this issue, but we all have a role to play, and evidently, panic-buying is happening as a result of someone's role not being played-out well. Who's role? You tell me.