Government Urges Reasonable Pricing at Food Festivals for the Benefit of All

The Domestic Trade and Cost of Living Ministry calls for reasonable pricing at food festivals to protect consumers and ensure fair practices. Traders are encouraged to sell their products at reasonable prices, while organizers should focus on showcasing culinary diversity and promoting popular destinations.

Government Urges Reasonable Pricing at Food Festivals for the Benefit of All

Government Urges Reasonable Pricing at Food Festivals for the Benefit of All - -1643455027

( Credit to: Thesun )

The recent uproar over exorbitant prices at food festivals has prompted the Domestic Trade and Cost of Living Ministry to address the issue. While the government recognizes the importance of these festivals as a means for traders to boost revenue, it also emphasizes the need for ethical practices among vendors.

The ministry has called on traders and vendors to sell their products at reasonable prices, ensuring that all parties involved can profit.

Datuk Azman Adam, the enforcement director-general, acknowledged that the price hikes may be influenced by various factors such as food preparation costs, logistics, and space rental. He highlighted the issue of some vendors or promoters subleasing spaces at higher rates, despite the availability of low-cost rental spaces under local authority jurisdiction.

Government Regulations to Ensure Fair Pricing

Although the ministry does not set specific rules for pricing at food festivals, traders are subject to the Price Control and Anti-Profiteering Act 2011. According to Section 10 of the Act, traders must display price tags for their goods, while Section 14(1) addresses situations where traders unreasonably inflate prices, potentially leading to significant market price hikes.

Traders found engaging in such practices risk receiving notices under Section 21 of the Act. Additionally, traders must adhere to the Weights and Measures Act 1972, which requires the use of legally valid weighing and measuring instruments for fair and accurate transactions. They must also comply with Section 14(1) of the Trade Descriptions Act 2011, which prohibits the display of misleading prices.

Azman emphasized that these laws aim to protect consumers and maintain fair pricing practices, especially at events like food festivals, where visitors may be vulnerable to unreasonable pricing. However, the ministry has not received any complaints regarding high prices at food festivals at present.

Addressing Rental Rates and Promoting Culinary Diversity

Datuk Seri Rosli Sulaiman, the president of the Federation of Hawkers and Petty Traders Association Malaysia, believes that apart from raw material costs, high rental rates also contribute to vendors raising their prices in order to maintain profit margins. He suggested that reducing rental rates would alleviate the burden on traders and allow them to price their products more reasonably.

Rosli further emphasized the importance of careful planning for food festivals to ensure affordability and accessibility for both locals and tourists.

Rosli also noted that food festivals should showcase the country's culinary diversity rather than merely selling common dishes found at pasar malam. By promoting unique and hard-to-find dishes, food festivals can attract both locals and tourists, enhancing the overall experience.

He urged organizers to carefully plan these festivals, selecting suitable locations and fixed dates, while focusing on attracting tourists and promoting the country's traditional cuisine and popular destinations.

Conclusion: Ensuring Fair Practices and Promoting Culinary Heritage

In conclusion, the government's call for reasonable pricing at food festivals is a step towards ensuring fair practices and protecting consumers. By addressing factors such as rental rates and promoting culinary diversity, these festivals can become more affordable, appealing, and beneficial for both vendors and visitors.

With careful planning and consideration, food festivals have the potential to boost the tourism sector and showcase Malaysia's rich culinary heritage to the world.

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