Food Chamber

Food lanes set up along NLEX, SLEX

MANILA, Philippines — The government has finally set up separate food lanes at major entry points along the North Luzon Expressway and South Luzon Expressway to ensure the unimpeded delivery of food products during the enhanced quarantine to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

During the Laging Handa briefing on Wednesday, Philippine National Police spokesman Bernard Banac said authorities have acted upon the memorandum circular of the Department of Agriculture to allow the easy entry of food products.

“We have already separated the lane for agriculture products in NLEX and SLEX,” Banac said.

“Those for the delivery of food and other cargoes are different already so flow is faster now compared to the other day,” he said.

During the first day of implementation, several trucks transporting basic commodities like rice, vegetables, poultry and pork were hampered passing through the boundaries because there was only one lane open for all vehicles.

“In the coming days, more lanes will be opened for different kinds of sectors and groups. We will have further adjustments in the coming days,” Banac said.

The Philippine Chamber of Food Manufacturers Inc. also said some delivery vehicles of its member companies carrying supplies including raw materials and packaging intended for use in food manufacturing have been denied passage at various checkpoints in Luzon.

“If this situation continues, it will result in the disruption of manufacturing by our members, which can lead to shortages in the supply of manufactured food products,” the group said.

Agriculture Secretary William Dar maintained that all activities in relation to food production, processing, marketing, movement and delivery of cargoes should be unrestricted.

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