KUALA TERENGGANU: The short supply of subsidised polybag cooking oil has become critical as traders and consumers claim that it is difficult to get in the surrounding areas here.
In fact, a survey of several convenience stores and supermarkets in this area also found a shortage of stock for polybag cooking oil; only bottled cooking oil is available.
Nurshahidatina Eliya Zahari, 25, a convenience store trader, said the shortage of polybag cooking oil began at the end of last July.
According to her, the most she could get were two boxes of polybag cooking oil, each box containing 17 kilograms, which were purchased from wholesalers.
"The polybag cooking oil shortage began at the end of last month and has been ongoing until today.
"We have to personally search for supply in various other places and shops that sell it. Usually, consumers only want polybag cooking oil and I have to limit the sale to one or two packets per person," she said when met at her store in Kampung Losong Haji Awang, here, today.
Another convenience store trader, Woo Weng Chor, 72, said he had to personally search for polybag cooking oil supplies at supermarkets or wholesalers.
He mentioned that he was even willing to go to Bukit Payong, Marang, a distance of 15km solely to find polybag cooking oil supplies.
"If the store I visit has supplies, I can only buy two or three packets and then have to go to other stores.
"I have to do this because I couldn't get supplies from the supplier and I feel sorry for customers who come to the store wanting to buy polybag cooking oil," he said, operating his business at Jalan Hiliran, here.
Mazlan Mamat, 66, a budget rice trader, said he needs a significant supply daily for frying chicken.
He mentioned that the shortage of polybag cooking oil affected him and it was even worse when his operational costs would increase when using bottled cooking oil.
"Every day, I have to search for this polybag cooking oil from one shop to another to ensure smooth operations.
"I don't know how much longer I have to face this situation, as it wasn't difficult before to obtain them," he said.