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18 May, 2019 01:02:15 AM
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Vegetable prices down, meat dearer in kitchen market

STAFF REPORTER, DHAKA
Vegetable prices down, meat dearer in kitchen market
A customer buying vegetable at Kaplan Bazaar in the capital yesterday. Focus Bangla Photo

Prices of different vegetables went down and those of other essential commodities, especially garlic and ginger, showed an upward trend in the beginning of Ramadan last week.

Besides, beef was selling above the rates fixed by the government.

A visit to different kitchen markets, including Karwan Bazar, showed that ginger, both local and imported varieties, was selling for Tk. 120–150 a kg yesterday, marking a 10 per cent hike from the price of last week.

Imported garlic was trading for Tk. 120–150 a kg, while the local variety was selling for Tk 80–100 a kg at retail markets, registering a 10–19 per cent hike in a week.

Traders attributed this price hike to a rise in the import cost and the rising demand of garlic and ginger. However, buyers have blamed a syndicate for the rising prices.  

Onion prices went down from the previous week. The item was selling for Tk. 25–30 per kg as against last week's Tk. 30–35. The price of lentils rose to Tk.90–95 per kg, up by Tk. 5 from last week’s price of Tk. 85–90.

Chickpeas are very popular during Ramadan. The price of chickpeas rose to Tk. 75–80 a kg, up by Tk. 5 since last week’s price of Tk. 70–75.  

The price of sugar increased to Tk. 52–58 per kg. Last week, it had been selling for Tk. 47–52 a kg.  

However, vegetable prices showed a downward trend. Most vegetables were being sold for Tk. 40–60 a kg, even though they had retailed for Tk. 60–70 last week.

Summer vegetables like pointed gourd were selling for Tk. 40–45 per kg, okra for Tk. 45–50, bitter gourds for Tk. 50 and taro plant for Tk. 40–45 a kg yesterday.

Winter vegetables have almost disappeared from the market. Only tomato was available for Tk. 30–35 a kg.

Sponge gourds were being sold for Tk. 40–50 a kg and snake gourds for Tk. 40–50. Eggplants were selling for Tk. 40–45 a kg, bottle gourds for Tk 35–45 apiece, ladies finger for Tk. 25–30 a kg, papaya for Tk. 40–50 and cucumber for Tk. 30–40. Sweet pumpkins were selling for Tk. 40–60 per piece, while green chillies were being sold for Tk. 70–80 a kg. Potatoes were selling for Tk. 20–25 a kg.

Consumers blamed the government’s lax monitoring system, which fails to keep prices under control ahead of Ramadan every year.  

They also complained that some unscrupulous traders know that people will buy some items even at a much higher price during Ramadan. So, they take this chance to make hefty profit at this time, depriving people of comfort.     

“Prices of different varieties of vegetables are decreasing in the markets due to adequate supplies. These items will go down further,” said Zillur Rahman, a retailer at the Kawran Bazar kitchen market.

Although both Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) and Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) have fixed the prices of beef and other red meats a day before the start of Ramadan, most meat shops are yet to follow the price chart.

Visiting different kitchen markets, The Independent found that beef prices were fixed at Tk. 525 a kg on May 6 by the DSCC. But most meat traders were still selling beef for Tk. 550-560 a kg. However, some shops were found selling beef at Tk 525 a kg on the day. Besides, the price of mutton was Tk. 750–800 a kg.

Fish prices also remained high over the week. Rohu was being sold for Tk. 350–600 per kg, tilapia for Tk. 150–180, pangas for Tk. 170–200, pabda for Tk. 600–700, wallago attu for Tk. 600–800 and catfish for Tk. 500–600.

Prices of different varieties of rice remained unchanged over the week.

On the other hand, chicken prices remained high throughout the week.  

Broiler chicken was being sold for Tk. 145–155 per kg. Local chicken was selling for Tk. 450–500 per kg, layer chicken (small size) for Tk. 200–230 per piece and Pakistani chicken for Tk. 250–320 per piece.  

A chicken trader, Rashed, said the price of chicken increases during this period every year. But this year the price has risen significantly higher because of inadequate supplies, he added.

However, the state-owned Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) began selling commodities at a subsidised rate across the country from April 22. Under the programme, the TCB will sell 2,000–2,500 tonnes of edible oil, 2,000 tonnes of sugar, 1,000–1,100 tonnes of lentils, 1,500 tonnes of chickpeas, and 100 tonnes of dates. Some 2,827 dealers will sell the commodities at 187 spots across the country with the goods loaded on trucks.

There will be 35 such selling spots in the capital, 10 in Chattogram, five each in all the divisional cities, and one each at all district headquarters.

Besides, different government agencies, the commerce ministry, Department of Consumer Rights Protection, Bangladesh Standard and Testing Institution (BSTI), safe food department and the city corporations are regularly monitoring the markets. The Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) is also keeping an eye on markets across the country.

EA

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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