Meat Demand Sees Sales Surge

Lee Sang Yong  |  2013-11-28 15:06
Meat shops are mushrooming in North Korea, reflecting the growing purchasing power of North Korean citizens, a source has revealed.

The source located in Sinuiju, North Pyongan Province reported to Daily NK on the 27th that, The new moneyed class, who have become wealthy through trading, are bringing 200kg capacity fridges in from China and setting up meat shops. They started to store meat as soon as demand grew."

At these stores individuals can purchase an entire pig, paid for by the kilo at market price. They also sell pork cut into edible pieces at a comparatively higher price, it was explained.

Diversification is also occurring, with chicken, rabbit and pheasant meat reported to be on offer.

These stores are popular among the cadres and wealthier strata of North Korean society, as the meat sold in the markets is thought of as less fresh, and easily goes bad.

According to the source, the meat stores that have sprung up received permission from the authorities to be managed as businesses. In exchange, the authorities receive 10% of the profit.

There is talk that at one store, managers have five or six 200kg capacity fridges and hope to do all the meat trading in the region. Its also been said that if sales are good, they may expand into marine products like pollack, the source went on.

However, barriers to trade still exist; In a situation where there is no power whatsoever, there will of course come a time when none of the fridges will run. Its winter now so it doesnt matter, but in the summer the authorities will have to be given significant bribes to ensure the electricity flows. Ordinary people will purchase their own generators and manage storage places that way.

The source went on, Cadres are proud, so rather than personally visiting these stores, they ask people they know to bring it to their homes. Now others are emerging who hope to make money through deliveries.

Meanwhile, Daily NK reported on the 13th that pork was priced at 22,000 won per kilo, a 7000 won increase since the middle of September, when pork could be bought for 15,000 won per kilo.

At one particular store known to the source, meat is being sold for around 1000 won in excess of the average market price.
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