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Where’s the Beef in Raising Pork Prices?

by 5m Editor
9 November 2010, at 9:08am

MALAYSIA - Perak pork sellers have denied creating an artificial shortage of the meat.

Kinta District Pork Sellers and Butchers Association chairman Kew Mook Choy said pork sellers were already suffering from poor business because of high prices.

“People are consuming less pork because it is considered expensive meat,“ he said.

The Star reports that according to Mr Kew, the ex-farm price of live pigs was RM7.90 per kg while its retail price was between RM13 and 14 per kg.

“In the last five years, we have seen a drastic drop in pork consumption from about 900 pigs to 500 pigs daily.

“Our members used to open for business six days a week. Now we are lucky if we get to operate four days in a week,“ he said when contacted yesterday.

Mr Kew was responding to Perak Veterinary Services director Dr Quaza Nizamuddin Hassan Nizam statement that the group had used a recent ban on pig movement from Penang as an excuse to push for a price increase.

Mr Kew last week told a press conference that the ban, which started on 25 October following the detection of foot-and-mouth disease at a Tasek Gelugor farm in Penang, would create a shortage of the meat and cause prices to go up.

This was, however, denied by Dr Quaza, who said Perak had more than enough supply to meet the local demand.

Perak Livestock Farmers Association chairman Tung Hong Chai had also concurred, saying that association members had 470,000 head of pigs and enough even to cater for the Klang Valley market.

Mr Kew said they highlighted the matter because they do not want prices to escalate.

“To accuse us of using it as an excuse to increase prices is ridiculous because by increasing prices, we will be breaking our own rice bowls.“