Meat prices double in northwestern Syria

A butcher shop in the Bab Srejah market in Damascus - March 30, 2022 (Enab Baladi/Hassan Hassan)

A butcher shop in the Bab Srejah market in Damascus - March 30, 2022 (Enab Baladi/Hassan Hassan)

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Enab Baladi – Azaz

Of all kinds, the prices of meat have witnessed a continuous increase since the end of the month of Ramadan, reaching double the price in some Syrian regions, which in turn has an impact on consumption and the people’s lifestyle.

Prices during the holidays and what followed in the northwestern regions of Syria reached double what they were before, so that one kilogram of lamb reached 190 Turkish liras after it was about 80 Turkish liras about two months ago (the Turkish lira is equal to 425-431 Syrian pounds).

The price of a kilogram of veal has risen to 170 Turkish liras, about twice as high as it was in the same period, about 60,000 Syrian pounds.

The rise in prices in northwestern Syria, which is outside the control of the regime, is due to the smuggling of livestock towards areas controlled by the Syrian regime and areas in northeastern Syria controlled by the Autonomous Administration.

Prices are also affected by the high prices of fodder and livestock requirements, while residents of the region suffer from low income and wages.

Hamdan Kanno, the owner of a butcher shop in Azaz in the countryside of Aleppo, told Enab Baladi that the reason for the high prices is related to the absence of special bazaars for selling livestock in and around the area, which prompts meat sellers to move between the villages of al-Bab city and its countryside to choose and buy the livestock they need, and this necessarily means expenses additional to the seller.

Kanno added that the smuggling of sheep and their young (weanlings) to other areas of control causes an increase in meat prices.

The loss of pastures, the price of fodder that nutritionally compensates sheep in the absence of pastures, and the small number of sheep in the area are factors that contribute to raising prices, according to Mohammad al-Baaj, who works in retail and wholesale meat sales.

The continuous increase in prices for weeks has reduced the demand for purchases, which prompted people to focus on buying very small quantities compared to what they used to buy before, given that meat was almost half the current value, according to al-Baaj.

The high prices affected the behavior of consumers, including Abdulrahman Kanno, a resident of Azaz, who resorted to replacing the meat he bought for his family of four children with chicken after he used to buy lamb on an almost daily basis, according to what he told Enab Baladi.

He explained that the family’s consumption of meat was limited to once a month due to the high prices.

At the same time, Amal al-Sheikh, a mother of three children from Azaz, said that she has not brought meat into her house since Eid al-Adha of 2022 due to its high prices.

General condition

The rise in meat prices does not depend on the regions of northwestern Syria, according to what Enab Baladi monitored through its correspondents, as the regions of northeastern Syria are also witnessing a rise in meat prices, which appeared clearly after the month of Ramadan, so that the price of one kilogram of lamb jumped to 70,000 Syrian pounds after It was 55,000 pounds during Ramadan.

The prices of red meat also rise in the areas controlled by the regime, as well as the prices of chicken and its pieces (breast, thigh, wings, and liver). The price per kilogram ranges between 26,000 and 40,000 Syrian pounds.

The head of the Association of Butchers in Damascus, Mohammad Yahya al-Khen, explained that the price of a kilogram of veal in Damascus reaches 80,000 Syrian pounds (without bones) and 45,000 Syrian pounds (with bones).

The price of a kilogram of lamb is 120,000 Syrian pounds (without bones) and 90,000 pounds (with bones).

Al-Khen attributed the high prices to the abundance of pastures in the spring as a result of the rains, which prompted breeders to refrain from selling due to the availability of free pastures and the lack of the need to buy fodder.

Al-Khen expected that prices would continue to rise until after the next Eid al-Adha.

 

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