South Africa trade alliance calls for end to chicken taxes

Prices for chicken products have increased 11-32%
calendar icon 19 April 2022
clock icon 2 minute read

The South African Informal Traders Alliance (SAITA), which represents over 2 million informal and micro businesses across South Africa, is joining the call for government to remove tariff taxes and VAT on chicken products. The alliance said it will provide informal traders and consumers from low income households with the appropriate relief as prices for this important food source continue to escalate.

“South Africans are really struggling financially," said Rosheda Muller, National President of SAITA. "The cost of living seems to be rising to unsustainable levels, especially when you consider that wages are not moving in the same direction."

"Every single day we are seeing that another cost is going up - petrol, electricity, transport, and most importantly, food," she said. "Chicken is perhaps the most important part of our diet, and often the only meat that communities can afford. For this reason, government would do well to consider removing both VAT, and all other taxes that come in the form of tariffs, to help its people survive."

The most common products sold by informal traders and spaza shops are fruit and vegetables, chicken and eggs, dairy products, chips, sweets, cold drinks, and tobacco products.

"What happens when a person can no longer afford a product is that they trade down, or just stop eating it," said Muller. "The problem is that the price of all nutrition-rich products eaten in poorer communities is going up."

According to Muller, price increases are as follows:

  • Eggs +15%
  • Chicken feet +10%
  • Chicken gizzards +15%
  • Chicken liver +32%
  • Beef liver +30%
  • Beef 11%
  • Sausage +11%
  • Bologna +21%
  • Fish +7%
  • Chicken pieces +11%

“When food prices increase to these levels, people go hungry and they don’t get the nutrient-rich foods that they need to stay healthy," said Muller. "If government can help bring down the price of chicken taxes and levies, it will have a profound impact on people’s ability to afford this most important food category, and that it will ensure that communities, primarily those in low-income areas, are able to put a plate of nutritional food on the family table at night."

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