Concern over Rise in Pork Prices02 August 2013
HONG KONG - Markets in Hong Kong could raise the price of pork as consumers turn to the meat instead of chicken because of worries over bird flu.
Meat sellers say pork wholesale prices have surged to a six-month high of HK$1,570 per 100 catties - approximately one stone - as imports from the mainland have fallen.
The Standard reports that an alliance representing meat vendors has written to the government to demand closer supervision of suppliers Ng Fung Hong, Guangnan and Hong Kong Agriculture Special Zone Development.
They warn that consumers may end up having to pay more if the trend persists.
On average, the wholesale price of pork has gone up 18 per cent, from an average of HK$1,187 per 100 catties in March to an average of HK$1,401 per 100 catties last month. The wholesale price rose to HK$1,546 on Wednesday, 31 July.
However, Secretary for Food and Health Ko Wing-man said supply and the retail price of live pigs are similar to those of last year, and there is competition in the market because there are three suppliers.
Chan Chin-ming of the Hong Kong Live Pig and Meat Trade Workers' Union said more people are eating pork, fearing bird flu.
Mr Chin-ming said the supply of live pigs has fallen because the mainland has banned some substances used to feed pigs, so it takes longer to raise them. The hike in the yuan has also pushed up the wholesale price.
"Though there has been a steady price hike in the wholesale market, it does not affect the retail market due to the fierce competition between wet markets and supermarkets," he told The Standard.
Hong Kong Pork Traders General Association chairman Hui Wai-kin said that over the past two weeks, the price of fresh pork in the mainland rose 11 per cent.
This had led to a nine to ten per cent price hike in the wholesale pork market.
Pork-stall owners said they did not increase the retail price despite the high wholesale price.
TheMeatSite News Desk