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Wednesday, August 31, 2022

Call off price increase, PBM urges Gardenia


Parti Bangsa Malaysia says leading bread producer Gardenia is better able to absorb any financial shocks than smaller enterprises.

PETALING JAYA: Parti Bangsa Malaysia (PBM) has urged bread producer Gardenia to drop its plans to increase the prices of its loaves, spreads and other products from Sept 1.

PBM vice-president Dr G Shathiskumar said the timing of the proposed raise for what is a common household consumable is “most unfortunate and undesirable”.

“We call on Gardenia executives not to make decisions that will have far-reaching consequences based solely on balance sheet considerations,” he said in a statement.

Shathiskumar said raising the prices of bread at this juncture will only add unnecessary burden to the people, especially those in the B40 and M40 income groups.

He said PBM is also concerned that the proposed hike would lead to a domino effect in prices of other goods and services.

Other competing brands may also take advantage of the situation and increase their prices, he said.

“While we understand that the decision to raise prices of the bread was due to the rise in prices of raw material, PBM also recognises that the bread manufacturer is part of one of the largest conglomerates in this country.

“As such, the company would be able to absorb any financial shocks better than smaller enterprises,” he said.

On Sunday, Gardenia announced that it will increase the prices of its loaves, spreads and other products beginning Sept 1.

The company said the impact of inflation on raw materials has forced it to raise its prices for the second time in less than a year. The last time it hiked prices was on Dec 1, 2021.

From Sept 1, Gardenia Original Classic 400g will cost RM3 (up 20 sen), Original Classic Jumbo 600g RM4.30 (up 30 sen) and Breakthru Wholewheat 400g RM4 (up 40 sen).

The price of their cream rolls – vanilla, butter sugar and salted caramel – is going up by 10 sen to RM1.10 each. The Toast ‘Em bread series will also see a 50 sen hike to RM5.50.

The latest increase is due to the continued hike in the cost of raw materials, such as flour and vegetable fat, Gardenia Bakeries (KL) Sdn Bhd CEO Koh Chin Huat said in a letter to retailers, listing all the 53 products affected. - FMT

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