Commerce Ministry steps up surveillance on pork prices during Chinese New Year

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BANGKOK, 29 January 2013 The Commerce Ministry is stepping up its surveillance on pork prices ahead the upcoming Chinese New Year festival. 

Director-General of the Department of Internal Trade Wiboonlasana Ruamraksa said on Monday that local pork prices tend to rise considerably during the Lunar New Year celebration.

Therefore, the Department of Internal Trade has started the survey on the situation in the market before the festival takes place in February.

Ms. Wiboonlasana said that, so far, it has been business as usual although butchers have already placed more orders for pork and pigs in order to accommodate rising demand during the festival period.

She added that wholesale and retail prices have been going up in Thailand now, before everything will likely come down after the Chinese New Year festival.

The Director-General of the Department of Internal Trade went on to say that department officials have been out on the street to check out markets, where complaints of over-priced pork were lodged.

Ms. Wiboonlasana said that officials will keep monitoring pork prices closely until the end of the Lunar New Year festival while asking retailers to make sure all prices are clearly shown to consumers otherwise they may face a maximum fine of 10,000 baht. And if any retailer is found selling pork at the prices that exceed the department’s limits, retailers will be subject to a maximum jail term of 7 years or a maximum fine of 140,000 baht or both.