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Meat, Egg Prices to Stabilize in July: Ministry
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The sharp price hikes for meat and eggs in some areas, which were triggered off by insufficient supplies and increasing production cost, will likely come to a halt in July, sources with the Ministry of Commerce said on Friday.

The forecast is based on the facts that live pigs added at the beginning of the year to the pig population nationwide are ready to replenish the meat supplies and that egg laying season will come soon.

According to the Ministry of Commerce, in early and mid May, pork was distributed at an average price of 14.5 yuan (US$1.9) per kilogram in 36 major Chinese cities, up 8.6 percent month-on-month or 43.1 percent year-on-year. The average retail price of eggs stood at 7.00 yuan per kg in these cities, up 2.6 percent from a month earlier or 31.6 percent over a year earlier.

The sources said major factors behind the price hikes included insufficient supplies and increasing production cost.

A price slump in the first half of last year due to oversupply and epidemic outbreak compelled pig and poultry raisers to reduce their raising scale.

Meanwhile, price hikes for feed shored up raising cost. For instance, average maize price rose 20 percent year-on-year in the first four months of this year.

(Xinhua News Agency May 25, 2007)

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