Fish prices have risen sharply at the start of the month of Ramadan. A price inflation which is explained by strong demand from Moroccan consumers for seafood during this special month, but also by the multiplicity of intermediaries.
While Moroccans become fond of all kinds of food during the holy month, fish did not receive the same attention. In question, its high salt content which, according to its detractors, increased the sensation of thirst during the fasting day.
Abandoned, fish had no place alongside other Ramadan dishes and specialties on the tables of the ftour. As an exception to the rule, shrimp, and seafood more broadly, have always been popular with consumers and their prices are soaring, up to 180 dirhams per kilogram.
But in recent years, fish has seen a resurgence of attention, and several Moroccans reserve a place of choice for fish tagine, or frying, on their tables at the time of the Maghreb.
“During Ramadan, people want to eat a little more fish,” says a fish seller at the central market in Rabat, asserting that certain species of fish kept the same price, such as whiting sold for 60 dirhams.
“The price of shrimp and squid has increased because they are not available in very large quantities,” he added, explaining that these products were less available even before the month of Ramadan. According to him, there has only been an increase of 20 dirhams for these products.
Sardines, which are used to being affordable, are also in high demand this month, the same source said, saying their price has increased by 5 dirhams.
According to another seller, the prices of fish have generally become excessive and this amounts to a lack of regulation in this area where the many intermediaries double the prices. “There is an abundance of fish, thank God we have a land rich in fish,” he says.
“So that they are within everyone’s reach, normally sardines should not exceed 10 dirhams, anchovies 15 dirhams, whiting between 40 and 45 dirhams at most, and shrimps should not exceed 80 dirhams because we are in a country rich in fish ”.
Thus, he denounced this rise in prices caused by intermediaries between the wholesale market and fish sellers. “Between the wholesale market and us, there can be up to 16 intermediaries,” he said.