Mutton merchants at Manama Central Market in Bahrain have protested the presence of mutton shipped from Kenya claiming the produce was illegally stocked by wholesalers.
Bahrain merchants decry influx of meat products from Kenya
Kenya is one of Bahrain's main exporter of Mutton
The merchants who on April 5 returned fresh mutton deliveries to wholesale traders claim the latter have resorted to importing the produce from Kenya, Tanzania and Romania in order to create an artificial shortage of supply with an ultimate aim to increase prices.
Speaking to Bahraini Newspaper, The Daily Tribune, a mutton merchant known as Hussein Al Khasab requested the immediate intervention from the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism.
“The ministry should ensure that the wholesale price of mutton stocks remain the same across the Kingdom. They cannot sell mutton to us at a higher price while lowering the prices for supermarkets and other meat shops.”
Another mutton merchant said the traders have taken a unanimous decision to return mutton deliveries at the market back to wholesalers until the authorities fix the issue.
“Generally, one container imported contains 3,000 mutton sheep. And what they are doing now is illegally stocking a large share of imported mutton in order to increase the prices."
Price increase during Ramadan
They alleged that the wholesale traders have been in efforts to exploit them during the Holy Month of Ramadan by increasing prices.
“Until the beginning of Holy Month, mutton stocks were delivered to us at a rate of BD2.2 (Sh671) per kilogram. Now they are asking us to pay between BD2.6 (Sh793) and BD2.8 (Sh854) per kilogram citing the shortage of supply," he said.
Kenya exports to Bahrain was Sh1.4billion in 2021, according to the United Nations COMTRADE database on international trade.
In 2019 Kenya sold 511 tonnes of mutton. Between 2017 and 2019, mutton's exports increased by 32.73% bringing the nation Sh323million for the year 2019.
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