Asip Hasani, Blitar, East Java – Chicken breeders in Blitar regency, East Java, have suggested that the government avoid intervening in the market in response to an egg price hike in Jakarta, with breeders themselves dealing with low albeit stable prices.
The government needed to investigate whether or not there was any egg stockpiling that caused the egg price to soar, said Sukarman, head of Putera Cooperatives, on Thursday.
"The price for the breeders in Blitar and its surrounding cities is Rp 19,600 (US$1.36) to 19,800 per kilogram. The government has to find out the cause behind the egg price hike in Jakarta," Sukarman told The Jakarta Post.
The Agriculture Ministry launched Wednesday a market intervention initiative in seven markets in Jakarta to stabilize the soaring price of chicken eggs, which reached Rp 26,000 per kg.
The ministry distributed 8 tons of eggs to traders in the markets. Agriculture Minister Andi Amran Sulaiman said the egg price for the breeders was agreed at Rp 20,000 per kg, while the traders sold their eggs at Rp 23,000 per kg.
Sukarman further said the government's move to intervene in the market could negatively impact chicken breeders as the eggs were sold for a lower price than the retail price ceiling previously set by the government.
According to breeders, amid the soaring price of other food commodities, the egg price has remained stable at less than Rp 20,000 per kg for the Ramadan fasting month, thanks to the stable price of corn, a major feed source for chickens, which was sold at Rp 4,200 per kg.
There are more than 4,000 chicken breeders, mostly middle and low scale breeders, in Blitar regency with daily production capacity between 900 and 1,200 tons.
Production in Blitar makes up 30 to 40 percent of national egg production. (bbn)