Authorities assure of adequate food supply during Tet Festival

Despite a rising demand during peak season at year end, the Ministries of Agriculture and Rural Development, and Industry and Trade have pledged to ensure adequate food supplies and prevent rise in prices during the coming Tet holiday season.

After authorities in the Northern Provinces carried out raids on smuggling of chickens, the price of poultry across the country has escalated day by day. Hanoi City, Bac Giang, Bac Ninh and Hai Duong Provinces have never seen such a sharp increase in chicken prices as in the last few days. In the past month, chicken prices rose 20-30 percent, of which industrial chicken saw the steepest rise from VND60,000 to VND90,000 per kilo; and homebred chicken climbed from VND130,000 to VND160,000 per kilo.

There was a shortage of chicken as illicit chicken had caused prices to drastically drop in last several months, sending local poultry breeders into heavy debt, so they quit raising chickens. Meanwhile, some other breeders expected price to increase at year end and kept their chickens to sell near Tet holidays at a higher price. Therefore, they unintentionally caused the current situation of scarce goods and increase in prices.

The price of eggs also rose by VND8,000 per kilo compared to the past few weeks. Brown chicken eggs were sold at VND28,000-30,000 for ten; white chicken eggs were at VND35,000; and duck eggs at VND30,000-33,000.

Recently, traders from southern and central provinces carried pigs to the north to sell to China via unofficial cross-border trade, after information that China was increasing buying of pork at year end. Lang Son and Mong Cai border gates saw trucks carrying pigs heading to China almost every day. This raised concerns that without control over cross-border trade of pork, the price of pork will skyrocket as it did last year.

For nearly a month, there were hundreds of trucks carrying cattle and poultry everyday from provinces in South Central Coasts, Dong Nai, and the Mekong Delta to Northern Provinces as price of cattle and poultry in the North fetched upto VND6,000-10,000 per kilo higher than in the South.

Nguyen Xuan Duong, deputy head of Department of Husbandry, said that the current price level remains under control. He affirmed that supply of foods during Tet festive season will be ensured though there will be a marginal increase in poultry price. However, consumers will have to accept that breeders need to earn some profit after suffering losses for a long time.

Cao Duc Phat, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, also affirmed that the ministry has been struggling to find measures to prevent prices from skyrocketing at year end. Currently, local husbandry industry is able to provide the market with 220,000-230,000 tons of pork and 50,000-60,000 tons of poultry a month. So foods supply will be ensured during Tet festive season.

Of late, People’s Committees in Hanoi and Bac Giang Province have coordinated to supply Hanoi with chickens from Bac Giang to prevent illicit trade. In order to control chicken quality, Bac Giang authorities have pledged to step up inspections and stamp the ‘Ga Doi Yen The’ (Yen The chicken) trade mark on approved products.

By Phuc Van - Translated by Thuy Doan

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