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MoCI plans sale of fresh produce in kilos instead of cartons

Linking of ‘Commerce’ with cooperative societies discussed

KUWAIT CITY, April 5: In an effort to prevent the manipulation of prices and weighing scales, and to stop unjustified hoarding of goods, which some consumers are practicing – especially vegetables and fruits, the Union of Consumer Cooperative Societies in cooperation with the Ministry of Commerce and Industry will adopt a plan allowing such goods to be sold in kilograms instead of cartons, Al-Rai daily.

Head of the Union of Consumer Cooperative Societies Meshaal Al-Sayyar affirmed that the move was triggered by the new trend of some consumers buying food in large quantities – especially vegetables and fruits, for the purpose of storage. An act, which indirectly affects the portion of other consumers; hence the plan to adopt selling mechanism based on weight in kilos and not cartons. In a statement to the daily, Al-Sayyar explained that the Union of Consumer Cooperative Societies is available around the clock with the Emergency and Food Security Committee.

He pointed to continuous discussions held with the Minister of Commerce and Industry Khaled Al-Roudhan on previous and upcoming decisions and regulations issued for that purpose, adding “the State of Kuwait is one of countries that import food.”

In a related context, a government source told the daily that the Union of Consumer Cooperative Societies’ decision to adopt weighing system for vegetables and fruits, as per “kilogram” instead of carton, would prevent indirect manipulation of prices, seeing as prices are manipulated by reducing the quantity of the commodity in the sold carton.

He noted the weight of some commodities change based on their availability in the market and making the fluctuation of prices unnoticed by the consumer.

The source added that: “the idea of selling in kilos will become active provided that a decision is issued by the Ministry of Commerce for that purpose, especially as many cooperative societies have expressed approval of the proposal.”

Meanwhile, the issue of establishing an automated linking between the Ministry of Commerce and Industry and the cooperative societies was discussed with the aim of following up the sales movement and what problems some societies may encounter so that they could be dealt with immediately, reports Al-Rai daily.

Informed sources told the daily the link can provide the ministry with the daily data on the sales movement through the CCTV cameras which can transmit the image to the ministry around the clock since these cameras are connected to the operations room which is fitted with 16 screens and can monitor the movement inside the society and can help rectify a defect immediately and help redistribute food quantities according to consumption rates.

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