Owners of meat stores in Saudi have decided not to sell camel meat anymore. The move comes after the Saudi Arabian Minister of Health, Adel Faqih advised people not to consume camel meat or milk as a precaution against the spread of the MERS virus.
People though are still indecisive about staying away from the meat since there is no clear scientific evidence that links consumption of camel meat and milk to the disease.
Mohammad Al-Hajri, a Saudi citizen said that he would follow the MoH advice of refraining from eating camel meat and hopes that the move limits the spread of the virus. Another citizen, Saleh Al-Wadie said that his family prefers camel meat over other meats available in the market and that he has have been eating it regularly without any harm. He added. That he would continue buying the meant as he’s not convinced that camel meat is related to the disease.
Al Riyadh news observed that camel meat had all but disappeared from the markets in Dammam. The shop owners explained that demand for the pricey meat had gone down dramatically after rumors about its connection with MERS. One shop owner, Naser Al-Sayari said that camel meat is quite expensive, with prices reaching up to SR 6,000 per animal. So, by not selling the meat, show owners can prevent huge losses.
Al-Sayari commented that the decline in demand for camel meat might be a good thing after all, especially since the cost of camel meat has seen more than 100% increase. Earlier, a small 6-month-old camel used to cost SR 2,500, whereas now it costs well over SR 5,000. One kilogram of camel meant used to be sold for SR 35, but now it is over SR 55, reports Al Riyadh news.