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15 August, 2019 00:00 00 AM

Rawhide sold at throwaway prices

Rawhide sold at throwaway prices
This photo shows workers pile up rawhide of sacrificial animals in Barisal city on Eid-ul-Azha on Monday. independent photo

Low prices of rawhide and skin have triggered disappointment among regular as well as seasonal traders in Tangail district just after Eid-ul-Azha. Many sellers even vowed to bury the hide of their sacrificial animals next year rather than selling them at throwaway prices.

Local rawhide traders are incurring losses due to a sharp fall in prices of rawhide in Pakutia and Bollah hide markets after Eid.

The Pakutia market in Ghatail upazila and the Bollah market in Kalihati upazila are the largest trading places of rawhide in the region. Sellers and buyers from Tangail, Jamalpur, Sherpur, parts of Mymensingh, Gazipur and Sirajganj come to these markets. Trading activities in these places reach the peak after Eid-ul-Azha.

But the rawhide markets have been dull this year compared to the last few years due to the sharp fall in rawhide prices.

About 65,000 animals have been slaughtered in Tangail on the occasion of Eid-ul-Azha this year. But low prices of rawhide have marred the scenario.  

Dulal Sarker, a resident of Pariata village under Dhanbari upazila, said he had sold two pieces of rawhide for only Tk. 600.  

Seasonal traders incurred serious losses due to the unusually low prices of rawhide. Gandha, a seasonal rawhide trader in Madhupur upazila, said he had bought 20 cowhides for Tk. 6,000, but he was compelled to sell those to wholesale traders for Tk. 5,500.

Shahinur Alam and Shamim Ahmed, both wholesalers in the Bollah hide market, told this correspondent that the traders had invested on the sector by taking out loans from banks, NGOs and other local sources to make good profits. But all their hopes came to nothing thanks to the low prices.

Small and seasonal traders blame the syndicate of tanneries and companies for the dipping prices.

"Warehouse owners are now purchasing rawhide from middlemen at low prices. They are stockpiling the hide in order to sell them when the market price rises," said Md Jalal Mia, a trader of Tangail town.

Barishal hide traders get a raw deal

It has not been a happy Eid for rawhide traders in Barishal. A lull in transaction in the city’s rawhide markets has forced traders to sell their fare at throwaway prices to syndicated tannery owners from Dhaka.

Traders at the Chamarpatty and Padmabaty markets said the supply of raw skin during Eid-ul-Azha was satisfactory, but complained that prices were lower than last year. The situation was so bad that they gave away skins of goats and rams as complimentary gifts with every purchase of cow hide.

“We sold per piece of skin of both small and big cows for Tk. 200–400. But the seasonal collectors had forced us to buy them at Tk 300-500 per piece,” said Yusuf Ali, a regular rawhide collector.

Anwar Hossain, a raw hide collector from Nabagram in Barishal Sadar Upazila, said: “We have collected 120 cow skins for Tk. 400–500 per piece, but the wholesale collectors are offering me less than 50 per cent of the collection price.”

Sanoar Hossain, who came from Rupatali with three pieces of cow skin, said he will return to back home because he was being deprived of getting fair price.

Enayetur Rahman of Jagua area of the city came to the market with 20 cow hides, but forced to sell them for Tk. 250–300. “It didn’t even cover the transportation cost after collection,” he rued.

Some retail collectors and sellers of rawhide and skin said they were forced to return empty handed because they thought it was better to donate the hides to religious institutions than to sell them at such low prices.

Nasir Hossain, a wholesale rawhide and skin trader of Barishal market, said the standard-sized cow hide cost Tk. 300 with labour and pouring salt. To transport it to tannery owners in Dhaka raised the cost to Tk. 700-800 per piece.

Shahidur Rahman Shahin, secretary of Barishal Hide and Skin Merchants Association (BHSMA), said the Bangladesh Tannery Association (BTA) of Dhaka had fixed the price of 20 to 35 sq feet of salted rawhide to around Tk. 900–1,750 per piece. But in reality, buyers from tanneries were offering to buy them only at Tk. 300–500, he added.

Barishal raw hide and skin traders said that the situation was created due to non-payment of arrears of crores of taka by tannery owners of Dhaka. So, the collected hide and skin would rot if the situation was to continue, they added.

The demand and price of rawhide and skin have decreased in the international market. “So, we are forced to collect skin at lower prices than that declared by the association,” said Delwar Hossain, president of the Bangladesh Hides and Skin Merchants' Association.

He also said tannery owners owed more than Tk. 350 crore. “Earlier, they paid 10 per cent to 20 per cent upfront in cash, but only a handful has been paid this year.”


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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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