Friday, November 7, 2014

Venezuela Using Fingerprint Scanners to Ration Food Basics Including Milk

WSJ reports:

Amid worsening shortages, Venezuela recently reached a milestone of dubious distinction: It has joined the ranks of North Korea and Cuba in rationing food for its citizens.
On a recent, muggy morning, Maria Varge stood in line outside a Centro 99 grocery store, ready to scour the shelves for scarce items like cooking oil and milk. But before entering, Ms. Varge had to scan her fingerprint to ensure she wouldn’t buy more than her share.

Despite its technological twist on the old allotment booklet, Venezuela’s new program of rationing is infuriating consumers who say it creates tiresome waits, doesn’t relieve shortages and overlooks the far-reaching economic overhauls the country needs to resolve the problem.

“These machines make longer lines,” said Ms. Varge, 50, as she was jostled by people in line, “but you get inside, and they still don’t have what you want."..

Under the system in place here, basic price-controlled items—including milk, rice, coffee, toothpaste, chicken and detergent—are rationed, with the fingerprinting machine used to ensure that a shopper doesn’t return over and over to stock up. It means that consumers are limited to buying up to 2.2 pounds of powdered milk—called “gold” here for its rarity—a week”...Shoppers said the time waiting in line can stretch to more than five hours, a delay they chalk up to malfunctioning fingerprinting machines.
This is what happens when price controls are implemented. Need, I mention that part of Obamacare is a price control system?

And it is going to get worse in Venezuela. The Pan Am Post reports:
Venezuela Plans “Merry Christmas” through Strict Price Controls

On November 1, the Christmas shopping season officially began in Venezuela. The Superintendency of Fair Prices (SUNDDE) has launched their 2014 Merry Christmas Plan, and took to social media to promote the initiative, using the Spanish hashtags #NavidadAPreciosJustos and #NavidadesFelices.

The plan coincides with the government’s economic strategy, informally known as the Dakazo, that mandates stores maintain “fair prices” on key items. The idea is to protect the end-of-year Christmas bonus Venezuelan employers are obliged to pay their workers.

To ensure the policy is being followed, President Nicolás Maduro has ordered audits be conducted throughout the country. The government sent out Círculos de Lucha, inspection teams consisting of 27,100 inspectors, 700 attorneys, and military officers, to certify sales are conducted at prices set by the state.

1 comment:

  1. And Venezuela won't change because the system works fine for the rulers who always have everything they want and need.