No choice but to accept, FCCC says of new milk and butter prices

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The prices of Rewa Powdered Milk and Rewa Butter are expected to increase effective today, as a combined result of a number of factors including the increase in Fiji’s minimum wage.

An unavoidable event the Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission says of the price increase, calling on Fijians to be frugal and be prudent in their spending habits.

The commission said the increase is a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic that prompted closures of borders and trade restrictions, disrupting supply chains, including that for milk and butter.

“The Global Dairy Industry, which is the source of three major price regulated items – powdered and liquid milk, and butter, has been experiencing rising global milk production post-COVID-19 till date,” it said in a statement. “Fiji’s major dairy source, Fonterra, based in New Zealand, is experiencing expanding overseas demand and higher milk prices offered by the leading dairy cooperative. This has put pressure on Fonterra’s product prices to rise.

“With such price movement globally, coupled with Fiji’s new labor wage amendments and nominal inflation, the prices of most milk brands available in the market are expected to rise.”

The FCCC said the Fijian Government has since implemented measures to cushion the effect including the removal of VAT from 21 essential items, but it will also require consumers to take responsibility.

“At the same time, it is important to remember that these measures cannot completely eliminate rising costs, which means that all Fijians will need to do their part as consumers and prepare to be more frugal in the days to come and practice prudence in their spending habits.”

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