Rawhide prices fall flat
Seasonal traders throw away skins into Padma
Rawhide traders in the districts of the country including Rajshahi and Sirajganj were reluctant in purchasing skins this year causing a thin volume of collection at the field level.
The reluctance of collecting rawhide has resulted in an almost throwaway offer prices.
RAJSHAHI: Seasonal traders in the district threw rawhides of sacrificial animals away into the Padma River as they did not get proper prices.
About 1,500 goat skins have been thrown into the river at AI-Badh area on Sunday afternoon.
The skins of the sacrificial animals have been sold at throwaway prices in the district this year.
Being unable to sell the skins at fair rate, people donated those directly to madrasas or orphanages. Those institutions were also in trouble with the donated skins.
Although the government has fixed the price of rawhide before Eid-ul-Azha, cow hide is being sold at Tk 300 to 400 per piece and goat hide at Tk 10 to 30 per piece while skins of small goat remained unsold.
In most cases, they have been forced to give away the skins of sacrificial animals to the storekeepers for free.
It is alleged that a syndicate of storekeepers tried to decrease the price hoping to make more profit.
However, the storekeepers blamed the tannery owners.
SIRAJGANJ: On an average, the rawhide of cow was sold at Tk 200-250 per piece while that of goat was sold at Tk 40-45 in the district.
Getting not even the minimum price, many have thrown away skins.
On Monday noon, hundred pieces of rawhide, sacked and un-sacked, were seen in the leather village of Sirajganj Sadar.
Traders said purchasing rawhides has not been possible because of poor capacities arising out of fund crisis.
Less than half of the last year's rawhide volume has been collected this year.
Locals said, they sold hide of ox at Tk 200-250; the goat's skin was sold at Tk 10-12; hides of goat were avoided by many.
A seasonal trader at Salanga Bazaar Kurban Ali said, he has collected 25 cow hides at the rate of Tk 250-300; but wholesalers offered Taka 200 rate.
Another seasonal trader of Kawakhola at Sirajganj Sadar Hanif Sarkar said, he purchased five cow skins at Tk 1,700 including the carrying cost of Tk 200; his rawhides were sold at Tk 1,000 in the warehouse.
Due to low prices, many people in the char areas have thrown away hides on the ground.
There are 213 leather traders in the district. About 1.25 lakh pieces of rawhides of cows and goats are collected every year by wholesalers in different areas of the district including the leather village, Haatikumrul (Sirajganj Road) and Dhanghora areas. But only 50,000 pieces including 10,000 goat skins have been collected this year.
Treasurer of Sirajganj Leather Businessmen Welfare Association Md. Yusuf said, "Purchasing rawhide has no certainty of sale."
He said, traders have been in losing condition since last year; tanners have stopped their business; to them, the traders in Sirajganj owe crores of Taka.
He said this year he has collected only 500 pieces as against 5,000-6,000 pieces in earlier years.
He added the local traders owe to the wholesalers; wholesalers owe to the tanners; but none is clearing; and, after being indebted, many have quitted their businesses.
He pointed out that of the total 213 leather traders, half of them have left the business.
Sirajganj Leather Businessmen Welfare Association President Aminul Islam said, in most of the deal, they are to make purchase in cash; in addition, each skin requires processing with salt for sending to Dhaka which costs Tk 300 additionally.
"I have purchased only 15,000 pieces this year against last year's 40,000," he referred.
The total due of Sirajganj traders stands at around Tk 200 crore to Dhaka's traders; despite repeated reminding, they are not clearing these. "We cannot purchase required skins due to fund crunch; as a result, the traders at field levels are in worse conditions; moreover, the purchased skins are not getting buyers," he pointed out.
He further said, the government has given a loan of Tk 550-600 crore this year. "We don't know who have got this. Some of the tanners informed they were not given credit. So, they cannot clear our dues."