Skip to main content

This Ramadan, food prices change Egypt's longstanding Iftar customs

Surging food prices force Egyptians to strictly stick to the basics ahead of Ramadan.
People buy traditional lanterns and foodstuff ahead of the holy Muslim month of Ramadan at the market Sayyida Zeinab district, Cairo, Egypt, March 12, 2023.

CAIRO — Life is no longer the same for cattle trader Bahaa Mahmud. When the Islamic holy month of Ramadan approached in the previous years, Mahmud put together large amounts of food in preparation for his charity iftars —the evening meal following a day of fasting from sunrise to sunset—.

Mahmud would erect a tent outside his shop in Giza province, place dozens of chairs around the tables inside the tent lit with colorful lights and wait for the poor to arrive and break their fast.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.