Eggs imported from Thailand to arrive in South Korea this week
Local distributors completed the shipment of some 1 million eggs bound for South Korea on Friday and Saturday, which are likely to reach consumers early next month at the latest, sources said.
Local importers originally planned to import 2 million eggs that were expected to arrive in South Korea last week.
When the shipment reaches the market, it will mark the first time that eggs from Southeast Asian country will be sold here.
Currently, eggs from six other countries - New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Denmark, the Netherlands and Spain - are allowed in the country.
South Korea imported eggs from the United States for the first time in January, but stopped the process due to a bird flu breakout there.
The government has been dealing with rising egg prices since it suffered the worst avian influenza (AI) outbreak last winter, which led to the culling of more than 33 million birds.
It has been grappling with another outbreak since early this month.
The imported eggs are likely to be priced at some 100 won (US$0.09) each, less than half the average price of eggs sold in the domestic market at present.
Still, experts say it is unclear whether they will contribute to containing the rising egg prices with such a modest amount, considering that the country consumes about 30 million to 40 million eggs per day. ■