August 28, 2008 


Hong Kong's consumers drop their love for fresh meats on inflation worries


With food and oil prices rising, Hong Kong's consumers are giving up their love for fresh food for more affordable frozen products, according to a survey by AC Nielsen.


The ratings agency's Retail Measurement Survey indicated that total purchase of fresh pork, beef and chicken in the first five months of the year fell between 4 percent and 17 percent compared with the same time last year, while the number of frozen meat purchases jumped 25 percent.


Hong Kong's consumers have long held a strong preference for fresh pork and poultry, with most live pigs and poultry imported from mainland China and slaughtered in Hong Kong. Until recently, most households still buy their chickens freshly slaughtered from the market place until bird flu fears caused authorities to put a stop to the practice.


The latest Nielsen consumer confidence study also revealed that Hong Kong's consumer confidence index has slipped to the lowest in two years. Consumers are expected to tighten their purse strings further in the next 12 months as a result of continued global inflation.

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