Chicken price cools down amid low demand, oversupplyDemand, especially from hotels and restaurants, has dried up completely, traders say.
The retail price of chicken has dropped by nearly 30 percent to Rs220 per kg in the Kathmandu valley due to sufficient production and a decline in consumption, traders said.
In mid-September, chicken was traded at Rs300 per kg.
Junga Bahadur GC, president of Nepal Poultry Market Management Association, said that consumption has declined as there is no demand from hotels and restaurants despite the government allowing them to operate.
“The orders from the hotels and restaurants are worse-than-expected,” he said. “We are receiving orders occasionally.”
But on the other hand, the production is sufficient. GC said that chicken demand has halved compared to before the pandemic.
The price has declined by at least three different times within a month, he said.
Livestock traders said that production was halted during the lockdown but after the lockdown was lifted, there was sufficient production.
The country had imposed a complete lockdown on March 24 and it was lifted on July 21.
The price will not decline further as consumption should rise during the festive season which begins from next week, traders say.
The price of chicken meat jumped to Rs430 per kg in July with middlemen and suppliers taking advantage of a fall in production of chicken and eggs in the valley during the nationwide lockdown.
Nibesh Maharjan, owner of Quality Fresh Chicken House, Kalimati said that he has been selling chicken at Rs200 per kg. “The chicken price had even plunged to Rs170 per kg last week but it has gradually increased,” said Maharjan, who has been dealing with chicken wholesale and retail.
Meanwhile, the price of mountain goat is expected to increase this Dashain due to short supply.
Janak Kumar Khadka, president of the Kalanki Khasi Bazaar, said that the price of mountain goat is expected to reach up to Rs900 per kg as there is not enough supply. “This is the first time the price of the mountain goat went up this high,” he said.
Last Dashain, a kilo of live mountain goat cost Rs750, he said.
Mountain goats are brought in from Mustang.
According to him, around 10,500 mountain goats used to enter the valley during Dashain festival in the past years. “But this year, Kathmandu will have to share 10,000 mountain goats coming from Mustang between major cities across the country,” he said.
The price of live goat is even expected to remain on the lower side at around Rs650 per kg due to slow sales as consumer confidence has been affected by the coronavirus pandemic ahead of the festive season.
According to him, around 60,000 goats, mountain goats and sheep will arrive in the valley this year.
Food Management and Trading Company is also expected to not supply mountain goats this year with prices going high.
Shri Maniraj Khanal, deputy general manager of the company, said that the company that has been supplying mountain goats for the last six years may not trade them this year due to high transportation cost.
He said that the company had set a price for mountain goats at Rs600 per kg, which until last year was available at Rs540 per kg. “But we did not get the supply of mountain goats based on the price we had set.”
The trading company is procuring goats from Hetauda and Dang and will be bringing 1,000 goats in the first consignment. The company said that it would bring additional goats based on the demand.