Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The Great Penang Turkey Shortage of 2013



I have lived in Penang for 6 years now and have roasted a turkey for each of those years, except for one when I bought an already cooked turkey, which was terrible. Every year I would buy my turkey from Cold Storage in Island Plaza, where they always had a good supply from the end of November until after Christmas. The largest you could buy was about 5 kg., which would be about 11 lbs. back home. This year was different.

I noticed there were about 4 small turkeys at the very beginning of December, but into the second week of December until now there haven't been any. I checked out Cold Storage in Gurney Plaza, where they were sold out until just before Christmas. I also checked out a store in Tanjung Bungah famous for their frozen meat and they had been sold out since the first week of December. Tesco's had turkeys, but they were only about 6 kg. (a little over 3 lbs.), which is the same size as a big chicken. Yesterday I finally checked out Sam's Groceria in Gurney Paragon and they too were sold out, but were expecting a new shipment in today. I reserved the biggest one,5 kgs., and picked it up shortly after they called. When I got to the store there were only 5 turkeys in all. Luckily I got the biggest one.

Each of the stores said there was a shortage of turkeys this year for some reason, but the prices seemed to be the same. I paid RM120 ($40USD). Back home the same turkey cost about RM30 ($10USD), which isn't too bad considering the poor bird had to travel over 12,000 miles! Hopefully the rest of the fixings for Christmas dinner won't be so difficult to find.


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