TIRUVANANTHAPURAM : The one bright spot in this blazing, hot summer? Chicken lovers in the city can celebrate as chicken prices taking a big dip this summer. The almost record-low prices have prompted the Kerala Hotels and Restaurants Association (KHRA) to ask member establishments to reduce the price of chicken dishes. Chicken prices which stood at H120 to 125 a kg during the Christmas-New Year season in the capital, have plummeted to H84 and even lower on Wednesday. On the same day in March 2017, the price was pegged at H101.
The slump has left retail traders dejected. ‘’The price of chicken usually dips during the summer months, but not this low. The normal summer price is H90 to 100 a kg. The current slump will hit traders hard. The price can’t go lower than this,’’ said Siyad M, member, Poultry Farmers and Traders Association of Kerala.
Traders attribute the fall in prices to the slump in prices in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka, the main source of chicken for Kerala. The farm rate of chicken - the rate at which the suppliers source the fowl from the farm - stood at H56 a kg on Wednesday. Retailers sourced it from the suppliers at H66 a kg and sold it for H84. But in places in Kollam bordering Tamil Nadu, the competition saw the retail price falling as low as H65 a kg on Thursday. In December, chicken prices had shot through the roof courtesy of the Christmas-New Year demand and the fall in fish supply following the Ockhi cyclone disaster.
Meanwhile, the KHRA has asked member hotels and restaurants to slash the price of chicken dishes. ‘’It should come into effect in a week’s time,’’ said KHRA patron G Sudhiesh Kumar. Whether the establishments would actually do so remains to be seen. On the other hand, the price of mutton and beef has not witnessed any change over the past several months. Beef continues to cost H320 a kg (H360 for buffalo meat), and mutton is priced at H660.