An unusual election effect: Increased demand drives up poultry prices in Pune markets

Parthasarathi Biswas
urrently, farm gate prices — the price at which farmers sell their 2-2.5 kg market-ready birds — is around Rs 108-109 per kg.

Poultry prices, which usually fall in summer months, have increased in both wholesale and retail markets in Pune. Poultry owners say the prices have increased by 7-10 per cent due to higher demand and attribute the demand to the ongoing Lok Sabha elections. On an average, Pune records consumption of nearly 1-1.5 lakh kg of poultry meat in a day, but the figure usually falls by 10-12 per cent in summer, when many people avoid meat due to the searing heat.

"The demand is higher this year because of the ongoing elections," said a poultry farmer from Baramati.

As leaders of various political parties campaign across the state, and thousands of party workers try to reach out to voters, the consumption of chicken has increased as the election fervour intensifies.

Currently, farm gate prices — the price at which farmers sell their 2-2.5 kg market-ready birds — is around Rs 108-109 per kg. In the wholesale markets, chicken rates have crossed the Rs 200 per kg mark in the last few weeks.

Prasana Pedgaonkar, deputy general manager of Venkatesh Hatcheries Limited, which sells poultry products under the brand name of Venkys, said the current trend will continue for the next few weeks.