Bird Flu Scare: Restaurants in Indian Capital Stop Serving Poultry Dishes
Feb 22, 2006 - 3:45:37 PM
Close on the heels of some airlines keeping chicken dishes out of their menu, numerous restaurants in the capital too have stopped serving these with people reluctant to order poultry dishes.
"We have stopped preparing chicken dishes because people have stopped demanding such dishes for the past two days," said Yashpal Wadhwa, owner of the well known Pindi restaurant in Pandara Road market.
"People have just stopped asking for chicken dishes. On the first day, though we had all the chicken delicacies ready we did not sell even a single plate," he added.
Ever since India's first bird flu case was reported from Maharashtra's Navapur village on Saturday, more than 100,000 poultry were culled there till Tuesday and a sharp dip reported in sales of chicken and eggs across the country.
Wadhwa added that his restaurant has reduced the preparations of its other non-vegetarian dishes as well because not many people were placing orders.
A similar situation was witnessed at another popular eating place, Gulati Restaurant, a few meters away from Pindi. "Our sales of chicken dishes have fallen sharply. Though some people are still asking for some of the dishes but it is only around 15-20 percent of the normal sales," said Krishan Kumar of Gulati.
He added that some of the favourite dishes like kebabs, butter chicken and kadahi chicken have taken a beating with not many people coming forward to eat them.
"We specialise in butter chicken but not many people are ordering it these days," said Kumar.
The bird flu outbreak has also severely affected the sale of chicken biryani at the capital's Hyderabadi Biryani House where its sales have come to a halt.
"We have stopped preparing it for the time being because there is no point when people are not ready to eat," said Nisu Kumar Singh, the owner. "Our main outlet is in Patparganj area and there too the sale of chicken biryani is nil," said Singh.
He added that the sale of mutton biryani had, however, almost doubled. "Earlier we used to sell almost 30 plates of mutton biryani everyday but for the past two days the sale is nearing 50," said Singh.
A similar situation was witnessed at roadside eatery Laziz dhaba, where sales of chicken dishes had been hit badly. "Sales have declined and all the customers are now opting for mutton or minced meat preparations rather than chicken," said Khalid, owner of the dhaba.
Meanwhile, the Federation of Hotels and Restaurants Association (FHRA) said that most of its 3,000 members have stopped serving half-cooked chicken dishes.
"According to experts if a chicken dish is cooked over 70 degrees Celsius then it is safe for consumption," said Shyam Suri, secretary general FHRA.
He added that most of the members have also stopped serving dishes which contained boiled eggs.
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