Businesses that try to profit from the swine flu panic by raising their prices face fines of up to a half a million yuan (HK$569,000), Beijing municipal authorities said. They said that even if such businesses had not profited, they would still face being closed if caught. The announcement was made by the Development and Reform Commission of Beijing, the city's economic planner. Price controls are usually announced by the Bureau of Pricing, its subdivision. The commission said it had been monitoring the manufacturers of more than 80 flu-related products, such as medicine and protective equipment. Nearly 2,000 traders and more than 20 key goods were also being watched, it added, but so far none had violated business ethics by raising prices. There were ample supplies of flu-related products, prices were stable and transactions normal, the commission said. While prices in Beijing are under strict control, elsewhere, such as in Guangdong and Shandong price increases were reported. Prices of traditional Chinese medicinal herbs rose after the government announced the formula for anti-flu treatments in Guangzhou, local media reported. The price of honeysuckle rose by 44 per cent, while the price of Banlangen rose by more than 80 per cent, and many merchants were withholding it. One product that has seen a price drop is pork. Despite efforts to remove fear of eating the meat, many mainland residents are eating less pork.