Chicken could soon be as expensive as beef as price increases hit hospitality and retail

The  Staff Canteen

Affordable chicken may soon be a thing of the past as the price of poultry is set to skyrocket in the coming months

Chicken is expected to become as expensive as beef as the cost of bird feed goes up, largely as a consequence of the war in Ukraine. 

Steve Murrells, chief executive of the Co-op told The Sun: “Chicken could become as expensive as beef. Chicken, which was incredibly cheap and great value for money, is rising quicker than any other protein.”

The price of chicken is rising faster than any other protein mostly because of feeding costs, rising energy prices and wage rises. The reason for all of this because chicken feed is made using soybean and wheat, which has seen a massive rise in price because of the war in Ukraine: Russia and Ukraine produce about a third of the world's grain and are both experiencing an especially poor harvest due to the Russian invasion. 

A Microcosm

The effects of rising costs are sweeping across the UK's retail and hospitality industries: fast-food restaurants such as Nando's and KFC are already raising their prices to reflect them: Nando's has increased its ten chicken wings and two sides from £14.95 to £16 since November 2021, and KFC's Trilogy Box Meal rose from £7.59 to £7.98. 

Many supermarkets are already pricing chicken at the same level as beef - which is usually three times as expensive.  For example, Marks & Spencer is already retailing organic chicken breasts and organic beef rump steak at £24.15 per kilogram. In Tesco, there is only a 17 pence difference between their 'Finest' range rump steak and 'Finest' range corn-fed free-range chicken fillets.

The UK's largest chicken supplier, 2 Sisters, said price inflation of 15 percent “will be needed to even begin to cover the increasing cost of production.”

The Office of National Statistics recorded a 19 percent rise in the price of chicken between March 2020 and March 2022.

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 3rd May 2022

Chicken could soon be as expensive as beef as price increases hit hospitality and retail