Meat prices, however, have remained stable

Although the kitchen markets of Dhaka have seen a regular flow of buyers amid the strict lockdown, prices are up with sellers citing stock shortages.

During a visit to the Hatirpool, Karwan Bazar, Mohakhali, and Gulshan-1 DNCC kitchen markets, the Dhaka Tribune found most products selling for higher prices than usual.

Masudur Rahman, a buyer at Hatirpool kitchen market said the price of edible oil was higher than expected, especially since the commodity saw a Tk4 per litre price cut last Wednesday. 

Also read – Edible oil prices go down by Tk4 per litre

“I heard the announcement of a reduction in the price of edible oil but bottled soybean oil is still being sold at Tk153-154 per litre — the previous price,” he said.

Additionally, the price of rice is also higher than usual, he added. 

“Medium thin variant rice is being sold at Tk53-56 per kg, but prior to the lockdown it was Tk50. Vegetable prices are also up,” Rahman further said.

Another buyer Rubel Hossain said the price of most vegetables in the market have gone up by Tk5 to Tk20 per kg. 

“The price of onion has gone up by Tk10 per kg in the market,” he added.

Mintu Mia, a vegetable trader at Hatirpool kitchen market, said prices have gone up compared to last week due to a shortage of goods amid the lockdown.

He added that buyers are stockpiling goods in fears that the lockdown will be extended, leading to further shortage. 

The price of eggplant has increased by Tk10 per kg, selling for Tk50-70 per kg on Saturday. 

Tomatoes were sold for Tk80-100 per kg last week, but now they are selling for as high as Tk120. 

Carrots sold for Tk100 per kg on Saturday, Tk20 higher than last week. 

At the kitchen markets of the capital, per kg of potatoes are being sold at Tk24, which was Tk20 seven days ago. Cinnamon is being sold at Tk400 per kg, up from Tk360 a week ago. Also, per kg of turmeric is being sold for Tk280, which sold for Tk220 last week.

Meat prices, however, have remained stable.

Sirajul Islam, a butcher at Mohakhali kitchen market, said the prices of beef and mutton have remained unchanged. 

“Beef is being sold at Tk580-600 per kg. And a kg of mutton is being sold for Tk800-900,” he told Dhaka Tribune.

Also read – Opposition urges government to control prices of essentials

Chicken seller Bakul Roy said golden chicken sold for Tk210-220 per kg on Saturday. 

“Last week, broiler chickens were sold at Tk130 per kg, but the price has gone up by Tk 20, and is now being sold at Tk 150. Layer chicken costs Tk250 per kg,” he said.

SM Nazer Hossain, vice president of the Consumers Association of Bangladesh (CAB), said all emergency vehicles and good carrying transports are operational. 

“It is a lame excuse to blame goods transports for higher prices. Strict monitoring and regular drives should be conducted to bring back reasonable prices in the kitchen markets,” he added.

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