Who's buying up our durians?

Durian season is here, but we have a problem.

Supply is somewhat thin, and not just because of the foul weather up north. The Chinese, it seems, have developed a taste for durian too.

All that means if you do get your favourite durian, it's likely to be pricier.

Said Mr Goh Meng Chiang, who is durian supplier to the stars: "Now, when I bid for a basket of durians, I find out that the Chinese have already put a bid on it.

"I end up having to pay about 30 per cent more for a basket of durians."

Mr Goh, 35, counts among his customers Hong Kong gambling and real estate tycoon Stanley Ho, who sends his men down from Macau on a chartered flight to pick up durians from him every July.

His durians come from Malaysia, as do 90 per cent of those here.

Is Mr Goh talking up the price of the precious commodity here?

Said Mr Robin Neo, who works at Kean Lye Fruit Trading on Upper Serangoon Road: "Our selling prices have gone from $12 to $15 per kg to $18 per kg."

But don't panic just yet, durian lovers.

Mr Neo added: "It's just the start of the durian season and things may get better."

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