Local July 4, 2012 | 1:43 pm

Chicken at a record US$1.40 p/pound escalates row

Santo Domingo.- The northern Cibao region’s leading poultry producers Wednesday questioned the role played by Consumer Protection Agency director Altagracia Paulino, who would call a "one day without chicken" boycott on the meat’s high price.

But the row escalated further when the grocery stores and vendors grouped in the FENACERD agreed with Paulino, and would take part in the boycott, as chicken reached a record RD$54.50 (US$1.40) per pound.

Poultry sector leaders Eric Rivero, Wilfredo Cabrera and Ambiorix Cabrera visited the Chamber of Deputies Agriculture Committee today, to explain the meat’s production costs.

They said a pound of chicken costs RD $ 25.50 to produce and farms sell it for RD$29.00; frozen at RD$40.00 and fresh at RD $ 43.00, but they don’t regulate prices from intermediaries, such as supermarkets.

The business leaders said if the government wants to authorize chicken imports “so be it,” but it would still have to sell at RD$54.50 per pound.

Rivero said they’re earning less than 10% and confirmed they don’t control intermediaries’ prices, adding that Paulino’s boycott threat aims jeopardizes local farmers.

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