Kochi: Restaurateurs in Kerala Sunday announced they would not sell food items made from chicken as it was not profitable, a claim rejected by the suppliers who described the move as a ploy to raise prices.
From Thursday, restaurants in the state would not be selling chicken-based food items due to high-cost of raw chicken, Jose Mohan, general secretary of Kerala Hotel and Restaurant Association, told reporters here.
"Four months back the price of chicken was Rs.40 a kg and today it stands at Rs.130 a kg and we have no other option than to boycott chicken," Mohan claimed.
Kerala as a consumer state gets a lion's share of chickens from Tamil Nadu through agents and middle-men.
Rejecting their claim, V.T. Babu, office bearer of the Poultry Growers Association in the state, said this is nothing but a "ploy on the part of the hoteliers to increase the price of their products by blaming us".
"Today the cost for us for a kilogram of chicken is Rs.85 and we take a margin of just Rs.10 per kg of chicken...The wholesale price of chicken which we supply is around Rs.92 to Rs.95. They are taking the people for a ride," said Babu.
Most of the Kerala poultry farms get their supply of chicks from Tamil Nadu at around Rs.36 per bird and they sell these after around 40 days, a poultry farm owner said.