MANILA – The upcoming holidays will support the renewed demand for poultry and other meat products after the pandemic and lockdown measures affected the local supply and demand for these goods, Cargill Philippines president Sonny Catacutan said Thursday.
In a virtual media briefing, Catacutan, who is also Cargill Animal Nutrition and Health managing director, said they have seen a 40-percent decline in business at the onset of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) and lockdown measures in the country.
He added that the community quarantine measures, which shut down many food establishments such as restaurants, fast food, and hotels, have changed the dining behavior of consumers.
Cargill supplies chicken to Jollibee, one of the country’s largest fast food chains.
Catacutan said there was an oversupply of chicken due to the shutdown of food establishments.
Prices have also declined from PHP70 per kilo to PHP30 per kilo, he said.
“The recovery started when we open(ed) up around June. And now we see a continued recovery, it’s very important that (the) number of positives for Covid continue to decline and people begin to go out and know how to manage day to day safely,” he added.
Despite the current market challenges, Catacutan said Cargill is bullish about the consumption-driven economy of the country.
“We remain (confident) that consumption will fuel our economic growth and will fuel the productivity of our farmers and industries,” he said.
Meanwhile, Cargill Philippines corporate affairs director Christopher Ilagan said hotels, restaurants, and related institutions account for 30 percent of total poultry meat demand in the country.
“The impact was quite big. We are starting to see recovery ever since the GCQ (general community quarantine), MGCQ (modified GCQ) coming in. We have seen dine-in and take-outs improved more,” Ilagan said.
He added that the company is “cautiously optimistic” that the recovery continues.
“As we hit the Christmas rush, we are hoping that we may benefit from that as well,” he said. (PNA)