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Meat, eggs still beyond reach of the poor

Meat, eggs and milk selling at the government-subsidised prices at mobile shops in the capital are still beyond the reach of low-income people.

Only middle- and higher-income people gather the mobile shops run by the fisheries and livestock ministry, which are selling milk, eggs and meat at the subsidised prices.

The mobile shops started selling pasteurised liquid milk at Tk 80 per liter, beef at Tk 640 per kg, mutton at Tk 940 per kg, dressed broiler at Tk 340 per kg and eggs at Tk 10 per piece at 20 mobile sales points in the capital since the first day of holy Ramadan.

The people with low income raised questions over the prices of milk, broiler and eggs.

“If anyone can buy a dozen of egg at Tk 130 from any retail market, why people will throng the mobile shops to have egg at Tk 120 per dozen after waiting at least an hour in queue,” Ismail Hossain, a rickshaw-puller, told the Daily Sun at Kalshi sales point.

“The beef price is Tk 750 per kg at the local meat shop while it is Tk 640 per kg at the mobile shop. Can we afford the meat at that price?” he said.

While visiting Natunbazar at Vatara it was seen that many people are not able to buy the food items because there are three types of products sold in different packages – broiler chicken with beef, and chicken with milk, eggs, or just milk and eggs.

Shima Khatun, a buyer, said, “Many people like us can’t afford to buy it at this price. One kg of meat and chicken here will cost Tk 1000.”    “The price of milk and broiler chicken is higher than the market price. Because dressed broiler is Tk 340 per kg, milk is Tk 80 per litre. They are available in the market at a lower price than this,” she said.

Some middle- and higher-income people were seen buying beef and egg from the shop while broiler, milk and mutton are not attracted, to consumers.

Hasibul Aman, a private company employee, said he bought one kg beef, one kg broiler and one dozen from the mobile shop in front of Japan Garden City at Mohammadpur after standing in a queue.

He said the prices of the products are not low compared to their market prices. The government should revise their prices.

Most beef buyers at the mobile shops were middle-income group people.

The prices of the products are much higher compared to the previous year’s subsidised rates.

The price of pasteurised liquid milk was Tk 60 per liter, beef was Tk 550 per kg, mutton Tk 600 per kg, dressed broiler Tk 200 per kg and eggs was Tk 30 per four pieces last year during Ramadan.