February 15: The farm gate price of eggs has declined but the traders are charging consumers excessive price. Even though the price of eggs fell a week ago, retailers have not reduced the selling price for consumers.
The traders are taking advantage of the current political crisis and have been charging the price arbitrarily. This is because the government has failed to control the unnatural price hike, and the black market has not been monitored effectively.
Stakeholders inform that the traders who extort money by selling edible oil, rice and barley at inflated price have raised the price of eggs illegally.
According to the Nepal Egg Producers Association, the farm gate price of a large egg has decreased by Rs 15 per crate to Rs 325 from Rs 340. Similarly, the price of a small egg has come down to Rs 300 from Rs 310 per crate. However, consumers have been paying more than Rs 400 per crate.
According to the newly adjusted price, traders have to sell small eggs to consumers at a maximum of Rs 12 per egg and large eggs at Rs 13. However, traders have been selling both small and large eggs at Rs 15 each. According to the association, the price has come down due to the increase in egg production.
President of the association Shivaram KC informed that the current market price is excessively higher than the farm gate price.
At present, more than 3,000 egg farmers are associated with the Nepal Egg Producers Association. According to government statistics, about 1.5 billion eggs are produced annually in Nepal.
A few days ago, the Department of Commerce, Supplies and Consumer Protection had warned that they would not go for market monitoring if they do not get their allowance. Consumer rights activists informed that the traders are using this period as an opportunity.
According to Madhav Timilsina, chairman of the Consumer Rights Forum, the government mechanism has to prepare an action plan and make the price list of essential commodities public. "However, the market has become chaotic because the staff of the monitoring body are not working for the rights and interests of the consumers," he shared.
He informed that the market is not consumer-friendly as consumers have to pay high prices for consumer goods due to lack of effective monitoring by the government.