‘How are we supposed to pay more with the same salaries?’

PETALING JAYA: Families and food sellers are preparing to make significant changes once the subsidy and ceiling price for chicken are removed tomorrow.

Bank manager Siti R. Abdul, 49, from Kuala Lumpur said as a single mother of two, it is already an uphill battle managing all the family’s expenses.

She said that it is tough for most families to retain their lifestyle and changes have to be made to accommodate the current situation.

“The prices of goods keep increasing but not our salaries. How are we supposed to pay more if we do not earn more?

“We already had to make adjustments to our budget, and now we probably have to make another shift.

“I am unsure how we can sustain it like this. Right now, I buy three chickens which are cut into 14 pieces, but I then have cut the pieces smaller because my kids want to eat more than two pieces at times,” she said.

Chicken rice seller Haris Zaki is considering increasing menu prices if he has to pay more than RM10 a kilo for chicken.

“So far, I have no problem getting customers because I think my price is affordable at RM8 per pack.

“My main focus now is to ensure the quality of the food is maintained,” the 33-year-old said.

Haris said he purchases around 10kg to 15kg of chicken daily at RM8.50 a kilo in Klang.

He’s waiting to hear how yesterday’s announcement by Agriculture and Food Security Minister Datuk Seri Mohamad Sabu will affect his regular chicken suppliers.

Food trader Zafri Shahidin, 41, said business must go on even though the subsidy and price control for chicken has been lifted.

The 41-year-old predicted that his sales will go down when chicken prices are floated from tomorrow onwards.

“This is inevitable, so as traders we must continue selling and consider whether to make smaller portions or increase prices without forsaking quality.

“I foresee people will be more careful when eating out because food prices will definitely go up.

“I think the government should consider this move properly when implementing it because people are already mindful about their spending, especially when eating out,” he told The Star yesterday.

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