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Restaurants Canada says price increases coming to B.C. chicken 'unsustainable'

Packages of chicken breasts are shown on a shelf at a grocery store in Oakville, Ont., Friday, Jan.6, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Richard Buchan Packages of chicken breasts are shown on a shelf at a grocery store in Oakville, Ont., Friday, Jan.6, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Richard Buchan
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Restaurants Canada says an increase in the farm-level price of chicken in B.C. could raise costs for consumers by around 10 per cent.

The B.C. Chicken Marketing Board previously proposed a new pricing formula to determine the price of chicken in the province, saying farmers were struggling with rising costs.

Restaurants Canada says the B.C. Farm Industry Review Board has approved the change, which several food industry groups had raised the alarm about, saying it would put pressure on businesses and consumers.

The Retail Council of Canada was one of those groups, writing a letter in December to the B.C. premier and agriculture minister which said the change could increase consumer prices by an average of 15 per cent.

Restaurants Canada says further price increases to chicken are unsustainable for its members, adding that British Columbians already pay higher retail prices for chicken than other provinces.

The industry association says it will be advocating for changes to the price-setting process.

"The bottom line is chicken prices will become even more expensive because of this decision, exacerbating the financial challenges faced by our industry and consumers alike," the association said in its press release Thursday evening.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 24, 2024. 

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