Tempe and tahu off the menu!

Two of the most popular Indonesian foods are the bean curd tempe and tahu (tofu). Unfortunately for Jakartans, these foods are off the menu for the next couple of days due to a strike and demonstration by tempe and tahu producers against the price rises for soy bean. As reported by The Jakarta Post, the demonstration yesterday in Jakarta numbered some 10,000 producers who rallied at the State Palacedemanding the government lower soybean prices and discontinue the free trade policy that allows private companies to control prices. Apparently they are unable to raise their product prices corresponding to input prices.

As one of the coordinators of the demonstration, Asep Hidayat, explains in The Jakarta Post: “The State Logistics Agency should take over control of the soybean market again,” He said soybeans were imported from the U.S. and the price had been on the rise since January last year.’

JP also reports that some violence broke out among the frustrated demonstrators. A lot of consumers will probably also be frustrated – whether they sympathise with the demonstrators or not – when they don’t get their tempe.

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