The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) issued a circular that sets a limit on the amount of goods consumers can buy while the country is in a state of public health emergency due to the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Under Memorandum Circular (MC) No. 20-07 on Anti-Hoarding and Anti-Panic Buying, retailers are “enjoined” to sell and consumers to buy enumerated products in the circular in quantities “sufficient to meet their household needs for a maximum of seven (7) days only.”

Retailers are also required to post notices in conspicuous places within their stores/branches to inform the public about the quantity of goods they are allowed to purchase.

Since the country is under a nationwide price freeze of basic necessities, the DTI reminds retailers to sell these goods at their latest prevailing prices prior the declaration of a State of Calamity for sixty (60) days or until 15 May 2020.

Any person or entity found to have violated or committed an illegal act of price manipulation, particularly hoarding, may face a fine ranging between Five Thousand Pesos (P5,000.00) and Two Million Pesos (P2,000,000.00) and imprisonment of not less than five (5) years up to 15 years. This is without prejudice to the prescribed penalties and sanctions in relevant ordinances issued by the local government units.

Here is the list of goods and the limits to how much a consumer can purchase:


Locally-produced instant noodles (mami, pancit canton) 5 pcs. per type, per brand
Locally-produced canned sardines 5 cans per type, per brand (regular size) 3 cans per type, per brand (big size)
Canned regular milk

5 cans per type, per brand (small) 2 cans per type, per brand

(other than small)

Powdered milk in sachet 2 bundles per brand
Instant coffee in sachet 2 bundles per brand
Mineral water

10 bottles any brand (small)

8 bottles any brand (medium)

5 bottles any brand (large)

2 bottles any brand (extra large)

Loaf bread

4 packs any kind, any brand (half loaf)

2 packs any kind, any brand (whole loaf)


70% solution anti-septic or

Disinfectant alcohol

2 pcs., regardless of volume
Hand sanitizer 2 pcs., regardless of size
Disinfecting liquids 2 pcs., regardless of size
Bath soap 5 pcs. (if individually sold) 1 pack (if sold as a pack)
Toilet paper

10 pcs. (if sold per roll)

1 pack (if sold as a pack)

Face mask

5 pcs. N-88 (surgical), any type or brand

5 pcs. N-95 (industrial), any type or brand

(Rommel F. Lopez)