The Bureau of Customs (BOC) padlocked three warehouses in Bulacan which were found to be storing a total of 202,000 sacks of imported rice grains. It is said the supplies came from Vietnam, Cambodia, and Thailand, and are reportedly worth around 505 million PHP.
The three warehouses were namely Great Harvest Rice Mill Warehouse, San Pedro Warehouse, and FS Rice Mill Warehouse. All three are located inside the Intercity Industrial Complex in Barangay San Juan, Balagtas town.
BOC Commissioner Bien Rubio explained the reason for closure in a statement, saying, “I have ordered the owners of these warehouses to present the necessary documents that will support its rice importation, as well as the amount of rice they have been keeping in these warehouses.”
“Smuggling agricultural products, in particular rice, as this is a staple food in every Filipino home, poses a grave threat to our economy. It creates a ripple effect that impacts the core of our agricultural sector—our farmers,” the commissioner added.
BOC officers teamed up with the Philippine Coast Guard Task Force Aduana to close down the warehouses. Speaker Ferdinand Martin Romualdez, House Committee on Agriculture and Food chairperson and Quezon First District Representative Wilfrido Mark Enverga, and ACT-CIS party-list Representative Erwin Tulfo were also present to accompany the agents.