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September 4, 2010

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Mooncakes to cost more this year

MOONCAKE fans may have to pay more for the Mid-autumn Festival delicacy this year. Retail prices are up by 5 to 20 percent due to the increased cost of ingredients, officials from the Shanghai Food Association said yesterday.

An official said the price of lotus seeds, beans, walnuts and some other ingredients had risen by 25 percent on average. This was the result of this year's disastrous weather in some provinces which devastated the agricultural industry.

An official with the Shanghai Xinya Food Co Ltd said its mooncakes are 5 percent more expensive than last year. He said retail prices may be even higher.

A staff member at the Xinhualou Co, another major mooncake maker in the city, said a box of eight of its mooncakes costs 68 yuan compared to 60 to 62 yuan last year.

Many mooncake makers have launched new products by substituting fruit, ice-cream, mushrooms and chocolate for more expensive ingredients to avoid raising prices.

Meanwhile, residents are being urged to read the regulations at post offices carefully before sending mooncakes abroad. Many countries, including Germany, France and Brazil, have banned the import of mooncakes.


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