Chicken prices swell as output dips due to cold

- POST REPORT, Kathmandu
Chicken prices swell as output dips due to cold

Jan 23, 2015-

Chicken prices in Kathmandu swelled Rs 100 per kg to Rs 305 per kg over the last one month as supplies shrank due to reduced output, traders said. Till last month, a kilo of chicken cost Rs 205 per kg retail.

The procurement price of live birds has also jumped to Rs 220 per kg from Rs 150 earlier. According to the Nepal Chicken Seller’s Association (NCSA), supplies have dropped 30 percent in the valley.

The NCSA fixes the price by checking the demand and supply chain. The association has hiked prices twice this month, by Rs 35 and Rs 20 per kg. “The cold has crippled chicken production in many parts of the Tarai that resulted in low supplies,” said Jung Bahadur BC, president of the NCSA.

According to traders, winter is an unfavourable season for poultry farmers when breeding is slow and the mortality rate is high.  

BC said that increased demand due to the start of the marriage season also contributed to the higher prices. “The number of marriage ceremonies has been increasing since mid-January, so consumption is high amid reduced supplies,” he said.

The valley’s daily chicken requirement amounts to an estimated 250 tonnes, according to the association. Chitwan is the major supplier of chicken to the Kathmandu valley followed by Sarlahi, Bara, Janakpur, Parsa, Nawalparasi, Dang, Kavre, Bhaktapur and Dhading.

BC added that farmers seem to have reduced supplies due to a lower profit margin. “As chicken was selling at very low prices till last month, some farmers slowed output and supply,” he said.

Traders said that prices were likely to increase in the coming days with an expected increase in demand.

“More auspicious days for marriage ceremonies are approaching and the Swasthani festival, a month-long religious fast dedicated to Goddess Swasthani, will also be ending soon,” said Shreeya Dhakal, proprietor of Chicken House located in Naya Bazaar. “We are seeing a surge in demand from restaurants, hotels and party palaces.”

Meanwhile, egg prices have remained stable at Rs 310 per carton.

Published: 24-01-2015 09:26

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