Print Edition - 2014-12-11 | MONEY
Chicken prices plunge amid static demand
Dec 10, 2014-
Chicken prices in the Kathmandu valley have dropped Rs 25 per kg over a week due to increased supplies amid static demand. The popular meat is being sold at Rs 205 per kg, down from Rs 230 per kg last month. The procurement price of live birds has also plunged to Rs 150 per kg from Rs 170 earlier.
Jung Bahadur BC, president of the Nepal Chicken Sellers Association, said that they decided to slash prices as supplies had been rising amid stable demand. “Poultry farmers from various areas are sending large quantities of chicken due to growing output, but demand has not increased despite the ongoing marriage season,” he said. He added that prices were likely to fall further in the days to come.
Traders said that poultry farming has been gaining popularity among the youths in the village areas too. “Many people have taken to poultry farming in the Tarai and the hills, but consumption has stagnated,” said BC.
Chitwan, Kavre, Bhaktapur, Dhading, Bara, Parsa, Birgunj, Nuwakot, Sindhupalchok and Janakpur are the main suppliers of chicken to the valley. According to the association, the daily requirement of chicken is estimated to be 250,000 kg during normal times and 300,000 kg during the marriage and festival seasons. BC said that a fall in prices may be beneficial to retailers, hoteliers and customers, but it will hamper farmers if these prices continue for a month.
“The average production cost of chicken is Rs 170 per kg, but farmers are getting only Rs 150 per kg,” said BC. Over the year, chicken prices have plunged around 50 percent. In December last year, prices soared to a record high of Rs 400 per kg due to a bird flu outbreak in the Kathmandu valley and Kavre, Dhading and Chitwan districts.
“The lower prices will mainly benefit hoteliers as their profits on the dishes they sell to their customers will rise. Households will also gain. But farmers will be suffering losses,” said Hari Krishna Rawal, proprietor of Valley Cold Store and a poultry farmer.
Chicken breeding is usually slow in the winter season and the mortality rate is higher compared to the summer season, he added.
Published: 11-12-2014 09:54