October 19, 2011
Meat prices slide as supplies grow in Vietnam
Meat prices, particularly pork prices in Vietnam are sliding amid higher market supplies from domestic producers and weakening prices in other meat products, reports Livestock Breeding Department under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
According to official sources, the wholesale price for pork fell 24% to VND53,000 (US$2.54) per kilogramme in Hanoi, to VND45,000 (US$2.15) per kilogramme in Central Highland Dak Lak province and to VND50,000 (US$2.39), per kilogramme in Ho Chi Minh City, said Nguyen Thanh Son, department deputy director.
A drop in pork wholesale prices had also pulled down prices related to other types of meat, he explained, saying that the price of chicken had fallen 40% to VND24,000 (US$1.15), per kilogramme.
Previous high prices encouraged farmers to develop their poultry and cattle herds, increasing the supply of meat to bring down prices, Mr Son added.
In the first nine months of this year, poultry production grew by 16.8% in terms of meat volume and 19% in relation to egg numbers.
Output surged by 2.6% for pork, 4.9% for beef, 9.3% for buffalo meat and 5.4% for milk over the same period, Son said.
An increasing meat import volume during recent months added to the domestic market, reducing prices further, he added.
The increase in domestic supply also occurred due to the premature selling of poultry and cattle to avoid floods in central and the southern areas, he noted.
However, the drop was temporary and under market rules, the reduction in meat wholesale prices was expected to subside because of demand increasing by 15% to 20% over the holiday period.
Meanwhile, housewives have commented that retail prices of meat had remained relatively unchanged.
"Meat prices haven't dropped by much if at all to be honest," said Le Ngoc Minh, a housewife from Dong Da District, Hanoi.
"The retail price for pork has kept steady at VND100,000 to VND120,000 (US$4.78-$5.74) per kilogramme on average while chicken cost VND60,000 to VND80,000 (US$2.87-$3.83) per kilogramme and beef VND200,000 to VND220,000 (US$9.57-$10.52) per kilogramme," she added.
"Although local newspapers have reported price drops, customers have continued buying meat at similar prices as before, with farmers still making little profit from breeding poultry and cattle," she explained.
Tran Thu An, a housewife from Ho Chi Minh City, said that retail prices for pork were still between VND95,000 to VND115,000 (US$4.54-$5.50), per kilogramme.
Nguyen Thi Hoa, a chicken trader at Bac Ninh Market in Thu Duc District, Ho Chi Minh City, said that retail prices for chicken were VND55,000 to VND60,000 (US$2.63-$2.87) per kilogramme, each kilogramme bringing in VND7,000 to VND10,000 (US$0.33-$0.48) in profit.
"The state should control the market more strictly in order to push down high prices related to essential goods, ensuring farmers are able to profit," Mrs Minh noted.
The department expected the supply of meat to satisfy domestic demand by the end of this year with the husbandry industry producing 175,000 tonnes of pork, 52,000-55,000 tonnes of chicken and 13,000 tonnes of other types of meat per month.
To reach such a target, the department suggested that the state provide farmers with incentives to recover production, including loans with soft interest rates and reduced import taxes for animal feed.