Chicken prices rise as cold hits output

- POST REPORT, Kathmandu
Chicken prices rise as cold hits output

Jan 6, 2015-

Chicken prices in the Kathmandu valley have jumped Rs 15 per kg to Rs 250 per kg due to a drop in supply. The popular meat item was priced Rs 235 per kg a week ago.

The Nepal Chicken Sellers Business Association has attributed the decline in supply to low production. According to Junga Bahadur BC, president of the association, supply has dropped 30 percent in the valley due to reduced output.

“The mortality rate of chicken is high during the winter season as farmers are unable to maintain constant temperatures. Lack of temperature-controlled sheds also means that chicken breeding is usually slow in the winter,” said BC. The valley’s daily chicken requirement amounts to an estimated 250 tonnes. In addition to production and supply being affected during the winter season, the extremely cold weather pushes up demand leading to an increase in prices, he said. However, traders said that prices were likely to drop in the next few weeks due to the start of the Swasthani festival, a month-long religious fast dedicated to Goddess Swasthani. The festival, which also involves the daily recitation of Swasthani Brata Katha, a Hindu tale, for a month, started on Monday. Hindu devotees usually abstain from meat during the holy month.

Chitwan, Kavre, Bhaktapur, Dhading, Bara, Parsa, Birgunj, Nuwakot, Sindhupalchok and Janakpur are the major suppliers of chicken to the valley. According to BC, the output from these districts meets 50 percent of the valley’s demand.

Traders said that production in the major supplying districts had been decreasing for the last few years. These districts used to fulfil almost 90 percent of the valley’s requirement. “A rise in pollution has made it difficult for farmers to promote poultry,” BC said, adding that many farmers were abandoning poultry farming.

 

Published: 07-01-2015 09:52

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