Egg prices up at some shops amid hot spell

Mr Liao, who has been selling eggs for 48 years, has raised prices by one cent an egg. But egg prices at several wet market stalls and provision shops, as well as major supermarkets, appear to be stable.
Mr Liao, who has been selling eggs for 48 years, has raised prices by one cent an egg. But egg prices at several wet market stalls and provision shops, as well as major supermarkets, appear to be stable.ST PHOTO: ALEXIS ONG

Cake shops also buying more eggs to meet demand for upcoming Hari Raya Puasa

The warm weather in Malaysia has ruffled some feathers, literally, leading to fewer eggs and a small rise in their prices at some shops in Singapore, although others are holding prices steady for now.

Egg prices rose by 10 cents for 10 on Monday, Mr Tan Lau Huah, chairman of the Eggs Import/ Export Trading Association, told The Straits Times on the same day.

One reason is that cake shops are buying more eggs to meet demand for the upcoming Hari Raya Puasa holiday on July 6. But Mr Tan also cited the hot weather in Malaysia.

"It's too hot, so the chickens eat less and lay fewer eggs," he said. His association's 25 egg supplier members get 80 per cent of their eggs from Malaysia, he added.

A 68-year-old owner of an egg stall at a market in Toa Payoh Lorong 1, who wanted to be known only as Mr Liao, told Lianhe Wanbao that he raised prices by one cent per egg. This was in line with the price hike by his supplier.

He sells about 2,000 eggs a day.

Mr Liao, an egg seller of 48 years, told The Straits Times: "If I don't raise (prices), I'll make losses."

Ang Seng Eggs Supplier, which has been in the business for more than 30 years and supplies to restaurants and cafeterias, has also raised prices of its eggs by one cent each. The firm imports its eggs from Johor Baru and Malacca, said its director Sam Ang, 51.

Mr Ang said: "On top of it being too hot in Malaysia, there's the problem of water shortage, so costs are rising." The chickens need water and have to be cleaned.

Egg prices at several wet market stalls and provision shops, as well as major supermarkets, appear to be stable.

Mr Lawrence Lim, 45, who runs a provision store in Ang Mo Kio Avenue 4, said that egg prices "always experience small fluctuations", and his store will try to absorb the price hike. But if the situation persists or if there are further increases, Mr Lim said he will have to increase egg prices.

A FairPrice spokesman said prices of its eggs have remained stable, "other than the typical fresh food price fluctuation".

And a Giant spokesman said it has not increased the price of its fresh eggs as the supermarket chain "usually tries to cushion fluctuations (through) forward- planning with suppliers".

Part-time flier distributor Jenny Lim, 57, who has a household of four people, said the current price hike is manageable.

"Even if prices rise, I'll still have to buy," she said. "If the price of a vegetable rises, you can just buy other vegetables, but you can't do this for eggs."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 29, 2016, with the headline 'Egg prices up at some shops amid hot spell'. Print Edition | Subscribe