Egg prices soar as heat takes toll on output

- Post Report, Kathmandu

May 26, 2016-

Egg prices have soared with a crate of 30 eggs costing as much as Rs390. Retailers are charging Rs14 per egg.  

Egg producers said that there had been a sharp drop in output as chickens were dying due to the recent spell of hot weather. The fall in supplies has pushed up egg prices.

“We used to sell eggs for Rs11 apiece until last week. Now we have to charge Rs13,” said Jeet Bahadur Gurung, proprietor of Bir Store at Naxal. “Suppliers have reported that they are producing new chicks and expect supplies to rise only after they grow up and start laying eggs.” 

The rise in egg prices has created a difficult situation for restaurants as they don’t know whether to hike prices of dishes containing eggs. Milan Bhattarai, a restaurant worker at Maple Restaurant at Baluwatar, said prices on the menu cannot be changed every time some ingredient used in a dish becomes dearer.  

According to the Nepal Egg Producers’ Association (NEPA), egg production in the country has decreased from 2.2 million units daily to 1.8 million units. The Kathmandu Valley alone consumes 1.6 million eggs daily. According to NEPA, Chitwan is the largest producer of eggs followed by Bhaktapur and Kavre districts. 

NEPA President Shiva Ram KC said a price hike was inevitable due to a decrease in production. “We are unable to meet demand due to the short supply” said KC. There is pressure on egg producers too as chicken feed has become expensive.

Household expenses have risen as prices of almost all daily essentials have swelled. “Customers are compelled to buy eggs regardless of the price hike,” said Sanjog Shrestha of Santosh Store.

Published: 26-05-2016 08:34

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