The Colombian Ministry of Agriculture has introduced price controls on basic food items in Colombia during the Holiday Season (YouTube).

TODAY COLOMBIA NEWS – The Colombian government has signed an agreement with five major food warehouses in the country to impose price controls that freeze the price of red meat, fish, dairy, eggs, grains, and processed foods, with the exception of fruits and vegetables, until January 15, 2017, measures similar to those implemented in Argentina by Cristina Kirchner’s government.

The measure was reported by Agriculture Minister Aurelio Iragorri, who said that despite the fact that some of the major food producers did not agree with the measure, the nation’s largest were persuaded to participate, including: Corabastos (Bogotá), Cavasa (Calí) in the western state of Valle del Cauca, the Bucaramanga Supply Center in the northeast of Colombia, Granabastos (Barranquilla) on the Caribbean coast, and Surabastos (Neiva) in the south.

Read More: Former Colombian Minister of Agriculture Detained in US
Read More: Colombian Government Gives in to Agriculture Subsidies

Price controls freeze the price of red meat, fish, dairy, eggs, grains, and processed foods, with the exception of fruits and vegetables, until January 15, 2017

The measure was taken, according to the minister, to achieve food security for Colombians this year and into early 2017 following price swings that has occurred in recent months with some vegetables due to the entry of new crops and agriculture projects like “Colombia Siembra” (Colombia Sowing).

The agreement stipulates that the merchants can fix a price for the products in question, and then must subsequently publish them in the various points of sale so that the buyers are well informed of prices. However, this could present problems for merchants and traders.

In the eventuality that production costs go up and prices are set, merchants and grocers will see their profits reduced and the measure will harm their bottom line. Similarly, in the case of production costs going down, consumers will still be stuck paying higher prices stipulated by the agreement.

Minister Irragori said, in an interview with Blu Radio, that price controls are not mandatory and therefore we are not talking about the introduction of “food cartels” which fix prices. However, the government and the nation’s largest food producers and distributors have already established such an arrangement, albeit for now temporarily.

Source: Blu Radio

Since you are here …

… we have a small favor to ask. More people are reading Q COSTA RICA more than ever but advertising revenues across all media channels are falling fast. And unlike many news organizations, we haven't and will never put up a paywall – we want to keep the Q open always. So you can see why we need to ask for your help. Updating reports on Q COSTA RICA demands a lot of time, money and hard work. But we do it because we believe our reports matter. To everyone who reads Q COSTA RICA, who likes it, help to support it by clicking our ads.

Do you part, click on an ad today.

Costa Rica's private transportation services AVANTI Costa Rica. Discreet and reliable service.

If you enjoyed this article please SHARE IT! (use share buttons).

Post your comments below or to our official FACEBOOK page.

Article originally appeared on Today Colombia and is republished here with permission.