Thursday, 7 February 2008

Cambodia: Rat Cuisine Price Rise

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Happy Year of the Rat. Prices on damn near everything has been going up in Cambodia, from real estate in Sihanoukville to condo rentals in Phnom Penh, but nothing symbolizes rampant inflation like the soaring prices of furry rodents from roadside vendors. But then the delicacy also seems to be in high demand in Vietnam (Dinh Bang) and Thailand (Suphanburi) as noted in the posts below.

The rocketing price of more conventional meats due to bird flu quarantines and world oil prices has doubled the market price of rat meat in Cambodia, local media reported Tuesday.

Rat meat has become so valuable that rice farmers "in their hundreds" had set up sideline businesses catching rats and making them table-ready, reported the Khmer-language daily Kampuchea Thmey.

Whereas a kilo of the best quality rat meat went for around 50 cents two years ago, it now fetches up to 1.50 dollars, the paper reported.

Restrictions on imports of pigs and poultry in an attempt to limit the spread of avian influenza, or bird flu, combined with high petrol prices have pushed up the prices of more usual staples.

Cambodians in certain provinces have long caught rats as a protein source when rodent numbers reach a peak during the rice harvest and enjoy the meat roasted or dried as a snack while drinking.

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