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Karnataka: Lockdown pushes mutton rate through the roof

Last Updated : 02 April 2020, 20:51 IST
Last Updated : 02 April 2020, 20:51 IST

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The nationwide lockdown against COVID-19 seems to have cast a dark spell on the trade of meat products especially in Karnataka. Despite the thriving demand for meat products in Bengaluru and other parts of Karnataka, the price of meat products has left a hole in the pocket due to clampdown on transportation and logistic facilities. Amidst such a scenario Karnataka consumed a whopping 6 lakh kilogram of mutton during the Post-Ugadi celebration with Bengaluru city alone consuming about 1.5 lakh kilogram of mutton.

With the ban on the sale of livestock across Karnataka in the wake of COVID-19 outbreak, the mutton shop owners in Bengaluru are finding it extremely difficult to source livestock. “With much difficulty, we have been able to get 5 to 10 sheep just to keep the business alive,” revealed a mutton shop owner.

The sudden demand and fall in the short supply of animals have left the price of mutton, chicken skyrocketing in the meat market. A kilogram of mutton which was sold at ₹ 560 to ₹ 600 has now been shot up to ₹ 750 to ₹ 800. Similarly, the cost of mutton in rural areas has also gone up from ₹ 350 to ₹450 to ₹ 550 to 650 per kilogram, according to sources in the market.

Even though the state government has permitted the sale of meat under essential commodities, the mutton and chicken shops are refusing to open shops. The Karnataka Mutton Stall on Ullal Road in Maruti Nagar has not opened for business except on Sunday since the lockdown. Even on Sunday, the shop was open for a few hours.

The Papanna Mutton Stall in Byatarayanapura, off Mysuru Road, is known for quality mutton in Bengaluru. The shop, except for a Sunday, has never opened for business. “On a regular Sunday, we slaughter about 120-125 sheep. But last Sunday we had to manage with just 60 sheep. Keeping in mind the health of the people, we did not slaughter much,” said Santosh, son of Papanna, the proprietor of the shop.

According to him, last Sunday one kilogram of mutton was sold at ₹ 750. “It is inevitable that this week we may have to increase it to ₹ 800. There is nothing much in our hands. A sheep that was normally sold at ₹ 10,000 is now sold anywhere between ₹ 13,000 and ₹ 14,000. Adding to it, the transportation cost has also increased. We are doing business under police security,” Santosh explained. They are also distributing masks and sanitizers to the customers at the shop.

6 lakh kilo mutton sold on post-Ugadi day.

Ushering in the New Year on Ugadi, people celebrate the festival by treating friends and relatives with sumptuous lunch. On the New Year day post-Ugadi festival, Karnataka witnessed the sale of whopping 6 lakh kilogram of mutton. The Bengaluru city alone accounted for 1.5 lakh kilogram of meat, according to Lokesh Gowda, President of Karnataka Sheep and Goat Farmers Cooperative Association. “There is a demand for mutton. But due to a lack of transport facilities, the prices have shot up. At some places a kilogram of mutton was even sold at Rs 1,000,” he explained.

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Published 02 April 2020, 20:51 IST

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