Last Updated on 2022-12-15 , 5:17 pm
Even with it being more than two months since the end of Malaysia’s chicken export ban, it seems like chicken prices have been increasing steadily since then.
Since the ban, which started in June, chicken prices have risen by around 30 to 50%, with chicken meat costing anywhere between $8 to $10 per kilogramme in Singapore now.
And with the upcoming Lunar New Year period, the prices probably aren’t getting cheaper anytime soon.
In fact, they might get even more expensive, so that’s probably something to keep in mind before you decide that you’ll be gorging yourself on an entire chicken a day during the festive season.
Here’s what chicken vendors and customers have to say.
When visiting wet markets and supermarkets around the Ang Mo Kio and Yishun area, Lianhe Zaobao reporters noticed a plentiful supply of chicken imported from Malaysia.
However, it seemed like the chicken from our neighbours across the causeway hasn’t been that popular amongst consumers as of late.
According to the vendors interviewed, fresh chicken prices have continued to increase over the past two months, causing their sales to dip.
In particular, many consumers have either turned to purchase more frozen chicken, the cheaper alternative, or have simply cut down on the amount of chicken meat they buy altogether.
At Chong Pang Market and Food Centre, the owner of Ah Cai Fresh Chicken and Duck shared that chicken prices have risen by more than 50% from $6 per kilogramme in the past to $9.50 per kilogramme now.
Another stallholder at the same wet market pointed out that the demand for chicken increases during the Lunar New Year period, especially for more popular chicken parts such as the wings or drumstick.
He predicts that the price of Malaysia-imported chicken may increase by another 20% next year as the Lunar New Year period comes around.
Apart from that, Zaobao’s reporters also noticed that different stalls sell their chickens at different prices. For example, chicken wings, drumsticks and breasts are sold at around $9 to $15 per kilogramme at the various stalls.
Vendors Trying to Get More Customers Amidst the Increase in Prices
As for the stallholder of Mr Ong’s Chickens at Teck Ghee Court Market and Food Centre, he said that the continuous increase in chicken prices since the Malaysian chicken export ban has caused him to lose many customers.
While he could sell around 200 chickens per day in the past, he sells less than 80 per day nowadays.
He added that many customers ask about the prices but do not buy anything.
To try and attract more customers, Norman Firdaus, who specialises in selling Halal chicken, has also begun to sell frozen chicken from Brazil.
He also holds promotions on weekends where he sells large chicken drumsticks for $1 each.
For comparison, frozen chicken imported from Brazil is priced between $4.50 to $6 for chickens that weigh 900g to a kilogramme.
NTUC FairPrice Chicken Prices
On the other hand, fresh chicken costs anywhere from $9.20 to $14.80 for a whole chicken that weighs around 1.3 to 1.4 kilogrammes, based on the brand and size of the chicken.
In particular, the Fresh Sakura Chicken was the most expensive brand of chicken available at NTUC FairPrice, which is sold at $14.80 for a 1.3kg chicken.
Since chicken prices (and the prices of everything else) have been increasing steadily over the years, consumers have also made their own adjustments when buying chickens.
A 70-year-old retiree by the name of Lin Zinni (Hanyu pinyin) shared that she usually buys chicken wings and drumsticks to make soy sauce chicken, but these chicken parts have increased in price from $9.50 to $13.
Even though she only cooks for her husband and herself, she has since cut down on the number of times she purchases these chicken parts.
Another retiree named Xiao Zhenhua (Hanyu pinyin) explained that his family of six eats homecooked food every weekday.
With the increased price of fresh chicken, the 72-year-old has switched to buying frozen chicken occasionally.
More About the Ban and its Effects
After more than four months of the ban, which was put in place to stabilise Malaysia’s domestic market and ensure a substantial supply of chickens for their citizens, the chicken export ban that Malaysia imposed was lifted on 11 October this year.
Since then, the Malaysian government has approved exporting 1.8 million live chickens per month as part of the first stage after the ban, which equates to half of the amount Malaysia exported to Singapore monthly before the ban.
The secretary-general of the Poultry Merchants’ Association also confirmed that Malaysia has continued to export 1.8 million chickens monthly as of now.
As for whether this amount will increase before the Lunar New Year period, the association has yet to receive any notice regarding that.
Before the ban was lifted, Singapore mainly sourced its chicken from other countries such as Thailand and Australia.
The ban also caused chicken prices to increase drastically when it came into place.
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