MANILA, Philippines – "Kung gusto mo magtipid, kumain ka ng gulay."
(If you want to be frugal, eat vegetables.)
Vegetable dishes like pinakbet are the go-to dish for people who want to save up some cash in times when prices of goods are high, but still want to eat good food. It's also hitting two birds with one stone – it's nutritious and economical.
However, that may no longer be the case, as prices of vegetables have also zoomed sky-high. (IN CHARTS: This is how bad August 2018 inflation looks like in regions)
Prices of vegetables have soared as high as 35.6% year-on-year in the Cagayan Valley, while it jumped to over 25% in Bicol, National Capital Region (NCR), and Mimaropa.
Rappler went to some groceries and wet markets in Metro Manila to inspect the prices of the ingredients of pinakbet and assess their affordability.
Some of attendants of SM Cubao said that prices have indeed jumped, but cannot say by how much.
Here are more prices of other vegetables sold in groceries:
One would assume that prices are cheaper in wet markets than supermarkets. However, Rappler noticed that some of the vegetables are even more expensive in Nepa Q Mart than in SM.
Delia Cruz, a vegetable seller in Nepa Q Mart said that prices have gone up due to weather disturbances in Baguio City and Pangasinan, where the vegetables come from.
"Nagmahal talaga ngayon, kaya ang ibang suki nagtitipid talaga," Cruz said.
(Prices have gone up, some of the usual customers are tightening their belts.)
Fish and meat
The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) released the average prices in retail and supermarkets as of September 5.
In grocery stores, bangus (milkfish) was sold between P200 to P220 per kilo, while galunggong (round scad) was at P205 to P280 per kilo. Tilapia prices hover at around P125 per kilo.
As for chicken, prices were between P155 to P164 per kilo. Pork belly was selling between P240 to P310 per kilo.
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