The Financial Express

Poultry prices up on high demand

| Updated: February 16, 2021 19:02:51

Poultry prices up on high demand

Prices of poultry meat have posted a marked rise this month, thanks to its increased demand in restaurants, marriage ceremonies and similar social programmes.

The social whirl has started afresh with a steady recommencement of economic activity.

Kitchen market sources said retail prices of all varieties, including broiler, Pakistani and indigenous, have seen a 10-15 per cent hike in the past two weeks.

Broiler was traded at Tk 145-155 a kilogram on Monday, witnessing a Tk 15 hike per kg during the period.

Sonali and Pakistani varieties retailed at Tk 250-270 a kg while the layer at Tk 165-180 a kg.

Trading sources said indigenous chicken retailed at Tk 420-480 in Dhaka's kitchen market.

According to the state-run Trading Corporation of Bangladesh, the current prices of broiler chicken are 26 per cent higher than that of a year ago.

The resumption in prices benefit farmers who incurred severe losses in 2020, but consumers are worried as items like rice, sugar, oil and flour are already much pricier, said insiders.

Danesh Ali, a chicken retailer in Mohammadpur's Katasur area, said demand for poultry meat has increased amid rising wedding events and a surge in demand in restaurants this month.

Chicken prices have been showing a gradual hike at poultry farms from January with a fading pandemic fear, he added.

Mr Ali said broiler prices have surged by Tk 1,000-1,100 per quintal (100 kg) in recent days.

He said November-February is time for marriage and other social gatherings when demand for poultry items increases notably, but such events were rare last year with the spread of coronavirus.

Prices of farm egg have also increased by Tk 6.0-10 per dozen in a week, as it was priced at Tk 90-104 a dozen on Monday, according to groceries.

Lokman Hossain, a broiler farm owner at Ghior in Manikganj, said they sold fowl at Tk 132-134 a kg.

Feed prices have risen by 15-20 per cent in recent months, forcing them to raise prices, he cited.

Bangladesh Poultry Industries Central Council (BPICC) president Mashiur Rahman said poor demand for meat and egg due to the pandemic has hit the poultry industry.

The industry suffered Tk 70-billion loss between March and May amid a strict lockdown in 2020, he uttered.

Hundreds of farms were forced to shut as prices of poultry items hit a 12-year low during the period.

Mr Rahman said the current rise in prices would not give farmers profits, just could help them sustain.

According to the BPICC, farm egg and broiler chicken prices in April 2020 fell to the level of 2008 when bird flu outbreak brought a disaster for the industry.

Broiler chicken prices then dropped to Tk 55-70 a kg at farm level against the production costs of Tk 118-130, depending on districts.

Farm egg prices also fell to Tk 4.0-4.8 apiece during the period against the production costs of Tk 6.0-6.5, revealed the BPICC.

Consumers Association of Bangladesh secretary Humayun Kabir Bhuiyan said chicken and egg are the key protein sources of the country.

Commoners largely depend on broiler chicken and farm eggs for their daily protein, he added.

This price uptrend will further hit the limited-income groups who are already battered with pricey rice, edible oil, flour and sugar.

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