JOHOR BARU: Salted eggs are a hot commodity these days as more Malaysians are having a crack at making their own mooncakes for the Mid-Autumn Festival.
Shops have reported good sales, amid fewer stocks compared with last year.
The supply of salted eggs, made from duck eggs preserved in brine, was lower for this year’s festive period, said egg retailer Maggie Hiang.
And compounding the situation is that the ducks from the supplier farms had been less productive.
“The ducks were not informed that they should lay more eggs this year,” she quipped.
With the low supply, coupled with the increased demand for salted eggs due to more people preferring to make their own mooncakes, they are now a much sought after item.
“The high demand drove the price up to RM45 for a box of 50 duck eggs from the previous RM40 per box,” said Hiang, who runs a shop in Taman Setia Indah.
She said customers began buying salted eggs in bulk from as early as June.
The occasion, also known as the Mooncake Festival, is celebrated on the 15th day of the eighth month in the Chinese calendar. This year, it falls on Sept 21.
Hiang, who has been in the trade for 15 years, also said her business increased by at least 30% compared to last year’s Mid-Autumn Festival due to many new customers frequenting her shop.
“Most of them are housewives who want to try making mooncakes for their family and friends. They are learning it from online tutorials,” she said, adding that a customer recently purchased 80 boxes at one go.
Similarly, baking supplies shop owner Lee Hung Joo said his business was unexpectedly good this time as the salted eggs at his store in Taman Ungku Tun Aminah were sold out for weeks.
“My suppliers were low in supply and they could not preserve the fresh duck eggs in time,” he said.
“The eggs have to be preserved for at least 21 days to achieve the desired texture and for the egg yolk to solidify so it won’t fall apart in the mooncake.
“I have no choice but to stock up on frozen salted egg yolks as my customers have been asking for them. Those are selling well too.
“I really did not expect a two-fold increase in the business this year.”
Housewife Jenny Fong, 46, said this was her first attempt at making mooncakes with her two children as they were spending more time at home.
“Since there are no mooncake fairs due to the pandemic, where we could sample mooncakes offered by the different brands, we decided to make them at home.
“It’s not too difficult. And it is also a chance for us to bond with one another,” she said.