TEMERLOH – After enjoying lunch of kampung food that included patin fish (silver catfish) at a restaurant here recently, a group of 50 customers was shocked to be billed RM13,000.
According to one of the diners, who preferred to remain anonymous, he had taken his friends to lunch at the restaurant which served kampung food,including freshwater fish, ulam (herbal plants) and kampung vegetables. He said after the meal, the restaurant owner handed him a bill of RM13,000,and he had no choice but to pay it.
“The bill came to about 260 per person, which was more expensive than eatingat a six-star hotel in Kuala Lumpur!” he told Bernama last month. The whopping bill has now become the talk among traders and residents of Temeroh, which is touted as the home of the patin fish.
It is understood that the price of patin buah or patin muncung from the river is between RM90 and RM120 per kilogramme, and sold at RM25 to RM35 per piece when cooked, depending on the size. Patin reared in cages is sold at RM15 per kg and cooked patin at RM5 to RM7 per piece.
The public, especially tourists, are advised to ask for the price of the fish first before ordering. The difference between the river patin and those reared at the farms is that the former is grey in colour, while the latter is lighter or whitish on the upper body and reddish on the lower, besides having a lot of fat.
Meanwhile, Othman Din, chief enforcement officer of the Domestic Trade,Cooperatives and Consumerism Ministry, Temerloh branch, advised restaurants and other eateries here to display the prices of dishes served for the convenienceof the public and customers. He said business operators could face a jail term of up to two years or a fine of RM15,000, or both, for failing to do so and convicted under the Price Control Act 1946.