PETALING JAYA: The roti canai, a favourite dish among Malaysians, may cost more now that the price of wheat flour is rising.
According to several news reports, there is already a hike in the price of wheat flour as well as a shortage of supply at retail outlets.
This is despite a May 14 statement from the domestic trade and consumer affairs ministry that India’s wheat export ban would not affect the commodity’s supply in Malaysia, as it imports 80% of its wheat from Australia and the balance from the US, Canada and Ukraine.
Roti canai is currently sold for between RM1.20 and RM1.70 a piece.
Malaysian Indian Muslim Restaurant Owners Association (Presma) president Jawahar Ali Taib Khan said there was already a price hike for wheat flour before India’s export ban.
He told FMT that a 25kg sack, which previously sold for RM45, was now priced at RM65.
“If this is not controlled, I am afraid there will be a slight increase in the price of wheat-based products by Presma’s 9,000 members,” he said.
He said he was worried that wholesalers might start hoarding wheat flour with the aim of eventually raising prices, but Presma members would try their best to refrain from doing so.
He urged the government to come up with a solution to the problem, such as expanding the list of wheat producing countries Malaysia would import from.
Malaysian Indian Restaurant Owners Association (Primas) president J Suresh also said restaurants would be affected by the latest development.
“Although restaurants have increased their prices recently, there is a possibility of a further price hike,” he said.
He told FMT restaurants might opt for alternatives to wheat flour if its price kept rising.