milk price rs 210 per liter Karachi dairynews7x7

In uncertain economic conditions, consumers continue to receive severe price shocks following an unchecked hike in the prices of daily use items, including loose milk, which has been increased to Rs210 from Rs190 per litre by some shopkeepers and live broiler chicken which has seen an increase of Rs30-40 per kg in the last two days, taking the cost to Rs480-500 per kilogram.

Earlier this month, the live bird was available at Rs390-440 per kg while it was being sold between Rs380-420kg in the last week of January, 2023.

The chicken meat is now being sold at Rs700-780 a kg which was Rs620-650 per kg a few days ago.

Boneless meat price hit a new peak of Rs1,000-1,100 per kg, showing a jump of Rs150-200 per kg in the same period.

Boneless poultry meat rate has crossed the price of boneless veal which is currently being sold at Rs900-1,000 per kg, while meat with bones is selling at Rs800-850 per kg.

Loose milk

On loose milk, Karachi Milk Retailers Association media coordinator Waheed Gaddi claimed that “over 1,000 shopkeepers are selling milk at an inflated rate. These are actually shops of wholesalers/dairy farmers and not ours members”.

He said: “Our 4,000 retail members have kept the price unchanged at Rs190 per litre.”

In case the price hike announced by dairy farmers and wholesalers is not reverted, retailers will be bound to charge Rs220 per litre instead of Rs210 from the consumers as per new rate calculation after Rs27 per litre jump in procurement price, he added.

On Dec 16, 2022, retailers got an increase of Rs10 per litre from the commissioner of Karachi to sell milk at Rs180 per litre, but majority of retailers continued to sell milk at Rs190 per litre, rejecting the official rate. At that time, the official wholesale rate was also increased from Rs160 per litre to Rs170.

Mr Waheed said the association had informed the commissioner of Karachi on February 10 that in the utter violation of Sindh High Court’s order regarding mechanism of fixing of fresh milk price, the association was not allowed the opportunity of being heard while fixing the prices via a notification on Oct 25, 2022 and Dec 16, 2022, despite noticeable increase in overhead expenses of retail shops.

He said retailers were still not getting milk at notified wholesale prices making it difficult for them to sell milk at a controlled rate after getting it at higher prices.

“The Commissioner had not taken any action in this regard against the stakeholders and only retailers were targeted to ensure the implementation of official retail rates,” he said.

Dairy farmers had again raised the price on February 11 to Rs183 per litre from their official rate of Rs163 per litre announced on Dec 16, 2022, he said.

He added that retailers had two options, either to purchase milk at higher price or discontinue its purchase and sale.

Poultry rates

On soaring poultry rates, Sindh Poultry Wholesalers Association general secretary Kamal Akhtar Siddiqui said that the wholesale rate of live bird was Rs600 per kg while meat rate was hovering between Rs650 and Rs700, but retailers charged prices at their whims.

He said clearance of soya bean meal (one of the main ingredients of poultry feed) from the port was still facing problems. The 50kg poultry feed bag is now tagged at Rs7,200, up by Rs600 in the last one month as the price of the poultry feed being made without soya bean is also going up.

He said the prices of poultry products may remain volatile for consumers in coming months due to delay in opening fresh letters of credit for import of soya bean meal while the scare of rupee devaluation was also making foreign suppliers of soya bean meal reluctant to strike any deal with local traders.

In almost all the food items, the federal, provincial and local governments are not playing their due role in rescuing consumers from paying skyrocketing prices, thus leaving manufacturers and traders free to keep jacking up prices.

Consumers believe that ‘both milk stakeholders and Commissioner of Karachi play hide and seek every time and carry short-term raids at retail shops to pacify consumers, which are later stopped’.

Source : Published in Dawn, February 13th, 2023

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