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Supporting the GPM Program to Create Cheap Food for the Community

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By: Nesya Alisha

The Cheap Food Movement (GPM) program is an important initiative in an effort to improve community welfare. With the main focus on providing cheap food, this program aims to overcome the problem of affordable food availability for all levels of society.

One of the main aspects of the GPM program is ensuring the availability of food at affordable prices for all levels of society. This includes various strategies, from increasing food production, optimizing distribution, to controlling prices. Concrete steps have also been taken to increase the accessibility of cheap food, such as subsidies for farmers, food aid programs and regulations that support stable food markets.

The National Food Agency (Bapanas) stated that the Cheap Food Movement (GPM) also plays a role in facing the challenges of price fluctuations for a number of foods or basic commodities, especially during Ramadan and Eid al-Fitr 1445 Hijriah.

Bapanas Deputy for Food and Nutrition Insecurity, Nyoto Suwignyo, said GPM aims to provide a solution to the spike in prices of basic commodities that often occur just before Ramadhan as well as providing food supplies for the community. Nyoto said that various efforts were made to prevent inflation, namely the distribution of food supply and price stabilization (SPHP) rice, including the cheap food movement.

According to him, through collaboration with regional governments and various other parties, maintaining stable prices of basic commodities and ensuring sufficient food availability ahead of the holy month of Ramadan can control inflation.

Apart from GPM, the efforts made by Bapanas to anticipate price increases for a number of basic commodities include accelerating the distribution of subsidized rice from the SPHP program to a number of modern retailers and traditional market stalls.

The National Food Agency has encouraged the distribution of SPHP rice throughout Indonesia with a minimum target of 1.2 million tons in 2024 as well as the distribution of Commercial Government Rice Reserves (CBP) until March 30 with a target of 250 thousand tons.

Previously, food prices were observed to experience fluctuations, especially during special moments such as Ramadan. To anticipate this, the local regional government is currently intensifying GPM to stabilize cheap food prices, especially rice.

Regarding this matter, Ponorogo Logistics Agency (Bulog) officer, Fotrianto, said that Bulog, Ponorogo Regency, East Java is intensifying GPM in its assigned area to reduce the rate of spike in rice prices on the market.

The market operation entitled GPM is carried out every Monday and Thursday. Once the GPM activities are underway, Bulog Ponorogo provides eight tons of cheap rice packaged for the SPHP program. Bulog sells this subsidized rice at a price of IDR 102 thousand for two packages of SPHP rice containing five kilograms each. Locations move, according to needs. Apart from Ponorogo, this program is also implemented in Magetan and Pacitan.

Fotrianto also ensured that the rice stock in the Ponorogo Bulog Warehouse was still safe until next Eid al-Fitr. While waiting for the next harvest, he appealed to the public not to panic and buy rice as needed. A number of residents who had received rice at affordable prices from Bulog Ponorogo also admitted that they were grateful for the GPM event because the price was much cheaper than the general price on the market.

A similar thing is regarding the ongoing GPM program in Aceh Regency, Singkil. Head of the Aceh Singkil Regency Food Service, Abdul Haris, said that in order to respond to the high spike in prices of basic commodities, efforts to handle and move material price increases utilize the GPM program. According to him, the increase in prices of a number of basic food items this time is expected to last for a long period of time. Because, price increases for things like rice, sugar, flour and chicken eggs occurred nationally.

As is known, one of the increases in prices of basic commodities occurred in Aceh Singkil Regency. Among other things, 15 Kg Premium Rice from Rp. 220 thousand/sack to Rp. 225 thousand. Then Bulk Cooking Oil was previously only Rp. 29 thousand, but now it has increased to 30/bamboo. Likewise for the price of sugar, from Rp. 17 thousand -18/Kg. And the price for purebred chicken eggs is from Rp. 48 -50 thousand/board.

Likewise, the West Sulawesi government through the West Sulawesi Provincial Food Security Service is collaborating with Bulog Mamuju which continues to try to overcome these prices by opening the GPM market.

Head of Bulog Mamuju, Suarsi, said that the distribution of rice in the GPM program was initiated by the West Sulawesi Provincial Food Security Service in collaboration with Bulog Mamuju and has been carried out since January 2024. His party provides rice, oil, sugar and eggs at affordable prices.

Apart from that, there are many other efforts through regional governments so that the GPM program can be distributed evenly. Overall, this program is a very important step in efforts to create cheap food for the Indonesian people. With strong support from the government, private sector, civil society, and through innovation and education, Indonesia can achieve these goals and maintain food security and the welfare of its people.

The author is a student majoring in food agribusiness

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