KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 4 — The egg shortage in some areas was an isolated problem and supply will normalise after the Chinese New Year celebration, the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry (KPDNHEP) said today.

In a statement today, the ministry’s enforcement director, Azman Adam, also advised Malaysians against panic buying.

Azman said that as of yesterday, egg supply had been at 91 per cent availability nationwide, which he said indicated a stable and adequate supply to meet current demand.

“However, there has been a sharp increase in demand and purchase of chicken eggs before, during and after the recent Chinese New Year holiday, which has contributed to the disruption of the current supply of chicken eggs.

“In addition, there are poultry farms and chicken eggs as well as logistics companies that do not operate during the Chinese New Year holiday, and some even have holidays longer than the two days of the Chinese New Year holiday. All this contributed to the delay in supplying eggs from the farm to wholesalers and retailers in several places such as Terengganu, Negri Sembilan, Perlis and Sarawak,” he said.

In addition to chicken and eggs, other items being monitored by the ministry include sugar, cooking oil, wheat flour, rice, white bread, milk powder, chicken, vegetables, chicken eggs and onions, he added.

Azman said the ministry was confident that egg supply will stabilise and availability will return to all localities in Malaysia when chicken egg farms and logistics companies resume operations.

He said the ministry has also instructed all retailers to renew stocks at their respective premises and contact wholesalers and manufacturers should their stocks fall to the reorder limit.

“KPDNHEP has also directed retailers to implement limited purchasing if necessary to ensure more consumers can buy and enjoy it. The government has taken intervention measures by implementing the maximum price determination from February 5, 2022 till June 5, 2022,” he said, adding that a total of two types of goods that have been determined for the listed maximum price include chicken and chicken eggs (Grade A, B and C).

The statement comes after complaints on social media and news reports on egg shortages, shortly before the Chinese New Year period.

Malaysians consume about 30 million chicken eggs per day, or 930 million a month nationwide. Based on chicken egg production data from 50 chicken egg companies which represent 80 per cent of chicken egg production in Malaysia, a total of 839,281,658 chicken eggs were produced in December 2021, he added.

Azman said that the projected chicken egg production for January 2022 is 839,882,296 eggs.