Thais of Chinese origin spend lesser on Hungry Ghost Festival

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BANGKOK, Aug 9 — Thais of Chinese origin went shopping, mostly for consumer products, as they prepared to pay respects to deceased ancestors in the annual Hungry Ghost Festival which falls on Sunday.

Surveys on food prices at a market on Yaowaraj Road, also known as Bangkok’s Chinatown, found that a whole chicken cost between Bt400-450, a duck between Bt380-400, a pork offering cost Bt150, oranges were Bt120 per kilogramme and three apples went for Bt100.

Shoppers at the market admitted that they had to reduce their spending because income had fallen while commodity prices had increased.

Market vendors also admitted that sales for the festival this year have declined as cooking gas prices have gone up.

They said they had to increase prices slightly and their businesses were only surviving because most of their customers were regulars.

This year’s general atmosphere on shopping for the Hungry Ghost Festival–which ranks in significance only behind Chinese New Year–is rather sluggish, as most shoppers were opting to purchase only bare necessities for worshipping.