Qatar's imported chicken prices have gone up since mid-September, anywhere from 15 percent to 40 percent according to retailers, with production shortfalls in Brazil and Saudi Arabia contributing largely to the problem.
The prices of brands like Sadia and Al Wataniya have increased considerably in the local market, said retailers. Sadia, imported from Brazil, costs QR12.50 (US$3.44) per kilogram, while Al Wataniya from Saudi Arabia traded on October 28 for between QR13.25 (US$3.65) and 13.75 (US$3.78) per kilogram. The prices of such brands as Doux (QR11.50/US$3.16), Asafa (QR12.30/US$3.38) and Delicia (QR10.50/US$2.89) have also grown from their previous levels by at least 15 percent to 30 percent since September, said a trader. Hilal, another brand from Brazil, was sold for QR10.50 per kilogram.
A significant fall in production at the global level, an increase in overheads and the increasing price of poultry feed across the world have all contributed to the latest price hike. There is also an increase in poultry demand in Saudi Arabia due to the current festival season. “Even though the main festival period is over, our experience with the suppliers in Saudi Arabia is that the demand will continue to be high there at least for the next fortnight,” said the representative of a major supplier in the local market. Saudi Arabia is meeting only 45–50 percent of its demand from local supply, and during the one-month period before and after the festival an acute shortage is felt throughout the kingdom. According to the industry, there has been a nearly 40 percent jump in poultry feed prices in Saudi Arabia in the last three months.