Iran allocates funds to avoid crisis in the meat market

By Vladislav Vorotnikov

- Last updated on GMT

Iran allocates funds to avoid crisis in the meat market

Related tags Meat Beef Pork Poultry

Iran’s government allocated US$5bn in funds to support the country’s food security, with around half to be spent on meat purchasing to ensure there is sufficient cheap meat on the market, Vice-President Mohammad-Reza Rahimi announced recently.

The country is currently going through hard times because of sanctions imposed by the US and EU, and the government fears a repetition of the "meat riots", which erupted at the beginning of last year, when meat became very expensive and citizens took part in mass protests.

"The administration has held several meetings dedicated to price control policy in the food market, especially with regards to beef and chicken. Under the current harsh economic sanctions against the country, the administration sees its main goal as supporting the underprivileged sections of society,"​ explained Rahimi.

Experts said it was clear that despite the government’s claims, the country cannot achieve self-sufficiency in meat production. Last year, Iran imported around 20,000 tonnes of poultry meat in the first 10 months of the Iranian year (20 March 2012 – 19 January 2013).

"The situation in the meat market is very important for the government, because it determines the mood of the society. We saw it last year and, if prices jump, we will see it again. Obviously US$5bn will be directed not only to purchasing of the amount of meat necessary to meet domestic demands, but also to supporting farmers. And this support will enable them to avoid raising meat prices,"​ said Ali Forde, Iranian agricultural specialist.

However, experts pointed out that the measures taken by the Iranian government in the national meat market are only temporary, and it will be able to ease the situation in a few months or half a year at the outside.

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