October 19, 2023


Livestock group foresees minimal increases in Malaysia's chicken prices once price ceiling lifted




A group representing livestock farmers in Malaysia expects minimal hikes in the price of chicken once the country's price ceiling on chicken is lifted next year.


Jeffrey Ng, adviser to the Federation of Livestock Farmers' Associations of Malaysia (FLFAM), said this is partly due to the declining price of chicken feed, which now sells at between RM123 (US$25.92) to RM130 (US$27.40) per 50kg.


"A rise in chicken prices is guaranteed (after the ceiling is removed) because the current price ceiling is lower than our production costs," said Ng. "If it doesn't rise, farmers will be at a loss. Who would want to farm chickens anymore if that is the case?


"However, we expect chicken prices to stabilise and balance out because the price of chicken feed has gone down a bit. This month alone it has decreased by RM2 (US$0.42) for a 50kg bag, and we're hoping that it decreases further.


"If it does, then that means our production and operation costs will reduce again," he told FMT, adding that a 50kg bag of chicken feed sold for about RM80 just three years ago.


Ng said chicken prices cannot go up too much as it will lead to an oversupply in the market, as no one would be purchasing the birds if prices were exorbitant.


In tabling the 2024 budget, Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim said the price ceiling for eggs and chicken will be lifted. He said the details on this will be announced by the agriculture and food security ministry.


The current price ceiling set by the government for a standard chicken is RM9.40 (US$1.98) per kilogramme, while the price for eggs are Grade A (45 sen per egg), Grade B (43 sen) and Grade C (41 sen) in the peninsula.


In Langkawi, Sabah, Sarawak and Labuan, the maximum price for both items differ according to the respective zones and districts.


Meanwhile, Ng said FLFAM met with government officials to discuss the suggested prices when the price ceiling is removed.


"We have given our suggestions, and now we wait for the government to decide," he said. "We ask the government to help farmers for a while (until prices stabilise). We don't want farmers to end up registering losses when the prices are floated."


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