Tamil Nadu: Beef demand soars on e-tailing sites

High demand for beef has led to increase in price and most sites say currently unavailable'.

CHENNAI: Availability of beef on online food portals has decreased in the past few days following regulation on the ban of cattle for slaughter. The quantity of beef available on, freshkari.inand has decreased due to increased demand.

Local butchers say the ban has reduced the availability of beef from slaughterhouses and meat market, attributing it to decline in the number of cattle being brought to slaughterhouses after the regulation. The demand for beef was ultimately increased on portals.

“The demand for beef has increased this week. Though we have not rais-ed the prices considerably, we might do so due to limited stock,” said a service executive at ColdKart. But the availability of beef online is now reduced owing to increased demand. After a swift search through online meat and beef seller websites, it was found that stock of beef on various websites like Coldkart and online meats were either limited or currently unavailable.

“I prefer buying beef online for better quality. But, when I tried to buy it from the online website Tryst, the price was Rs 1,000 per kg, which is very high when compared to regular rates,” said Awantra Rajan, a customer.

While beef used to be among the cheapest non-vegetarian proteins, it now seems beyond the reach of the common man, which is not only due to its availability but also because of increased prices.Increased demand for beef has led to an increase in the price of beef and beef products. Online sites for grocery, especially meat are trending but being out of stock, individuals, as well as restaurants, are finding it difficult to purchase beef for their daily usage.

“Online sites like Bigbasket and Nature’s Basket are not providing beef, other sites have beef marked as “currently unavailable”. The ban has increased the demand and decreased the availability,” said V. Rajesh, owner of a non-vegetarian restaurant in Tambaram.

However, the unavailability of beef is not just related to less stock, but also the fact that beef remains a controversial factor and online meats sellers would refrain from indulging into any such issues.

Online sale of cattle beefed up
There seems to be a mad rush on online portals like OLX, IndiaMart and CattleExchange, which deal with used products, to sell the cows. Cattle owners have taken to such portals to sell their loved cattle, thanks to the Union government’s latest circular regulating ban of cattle for slaughter.

“We used to get a few ads on the sale and purchase of cattle every week, that were around 10-15 on a weekly basis. But, in last few days, the number of such advertisements is more than 20,” Amit G, a service executive from IndiaMart, said. “We can’t assess the exact count of the number of advertisements as the rise has been noticed within a short period of time only,” he added.

Prakash S, a farm trader, says the Internet is an easy way to get in touch with the customers who are in need of cattle or selling cattle. A variety of breeds of cattle ranging from Rs 25,000 to Rs 2 lakhs are easily available on these sites. However, marketing executives at the online portals say they can’t check whether the cattle that are being sold are productive.

Retailers and wholesalers are carrying out the transaction of cows and buffalos through online forums, as it’s easy to reach the relevant customers through online portals. And some people seem to be disposing of their cattle since they don’t want to wade into controversy for possessing cow after the new set of rules.Gowthamy V, who posted an ad for the sale of cows on an online portal and sold them with the help of online brokers, says while the sale of cattle has become a bit dangerous for individuals due to the controversy over the sale of cattle, online media is easily accessible and safe.

“The facility of helpers and brokers has reduced the burden of looking for customers,” said Gowthamy. R.W. Laxman, a general trader in Chennai who is active on online portals said, “We had to look for customers for the sale and purchase of cattle. But, there were around 25 message requests in last few days, requesting for the sale and purchase of cattle through advertisements on e-commerce site I had posted on.”“All varieties of cattle are sold and purchased, which adds greatly to my in-come,” said Laxman.

Though these advertisements witnessed a rise in the sale of cattle, chiefly on OLX, it is now imposing regulations on such adverti-sements related to the purchase and sale of cattle.

“We are removing ad classifieds relating to the sale and purchase of cattle, as there were various advertisements where unproductive cattle is being sold, presenting combo offers, which could be misused through the portal, said Aman S., an executive from OLX.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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