Butcher shop in Cairo s Ramses Square. Ahram Online
The imports include 150,000 calves and 20,000 sheep, the ministry added.
Of the 150,000 calves, 45,000 will be slaughtered immediately, while the remaining 105,000 will be fattened.
The imports accord with the state's plan to increase its strategic meat stock via contracting multiple alternatives, including new international markets, Agriculture Minister Al-Said Al-Qusair affirmed.
Egypt aims to provide sufficient meat at reasonable prices in time for Eid Al-Adha, the minister continued.
Several Egyptians celebrate Eid El-Adha by slaughtering sheep, goats, or cows to feed their families and donate to the poor.
Others tend to buy sizeable amounts of meat.
Eid Al-Adha (the Feast of Sacrifice) dates from the historic event when Prophet Abraham was commanded by God, in a form of a dream vision, to sacrifice his son, Ishmael. But while he was in the act of sacrificing his son, God sent the Angel Gabriel with a huge ram. Gabriel informed Abraham that his dream vision was fulfilled and instructed him to sacrifice the ram as a ransom for his son. The story is mentioned in Sura (Chapter) 37 of the Holy Qur'an.
Furthermore, Al-Qusair stressed that the government was interested in releasing more fodder for cattle and poultry to lower their prices in the market.
Local meat prices have been rising steadily amid the global food crisis.
Meat prices in Egypt have been recently soaring, with some attributing the increase to low supplies of fodder and the high cost of importing it.
The low supply of imported fodder has caused the increase in meat prices, the Head of the Butchers Division at Cairo Chamber of Commerce Mohamed Wahba announced earlier this month.