14th June, 2011
Poultry dealers in South West Nigeria have raised an alarm over astronomical increase in the prices of poultry feeds and materials in the country, warning that they will soon be forced to jack up the prices of chicken and eggs as they can no longer cope with the situation.
At a news conference in Lagos, South West Nigeria on Monday, the poultry dealers under the aegis of the Poultry Association of Nigeria, PAN, said that â€œthe poultry farmers have endured the increase without necessarily increasing the prices of egg and chicken, but we may be forced to jack up the prices of our produce if the situation persisted.
â€œIn the last four months, the poultry industry has faced a lot of uncertainty and today it is on the verge of collapse. When we consider that feed constitutes 70 per cent of the total cost of production, it then becomes clear that we may need to increase the prices of egg and chicken.
â€œIf the trend continues unabated most, if not all poultry farms will have to reduce operations or close down with over two million Nigerians in the business of poultry rearing losing their job. As business owners, the poultry farmers may not have any other option than to increase the prices of egg and chicken to remain in business,â€ said the South West PAN Chairman, Dr. Ayoola Oduntan. â€œThe poultry industry consumes about two million metric tonnes of maize per annum with the largest quantity coming from the northern part of the country but the recent low production and cost of transportation from the north has affected poultry business,â€ he added. According to Oduntan, the rising cost of feed and raw materials in the country had put the industry on the verge of collapse and would extremely pose a serious threat to the countryâ€™s food security in the 2011 season and beyond.
He stated that the situation of things in the industry was very unpleasant and had reached point of state of emergency and that if nothing was done to remedy the situation, things might get out of hands.
â€œThe poultry industry in Nigeria may collapse in the nearest future due to incessant increase in the cost of poultry feed and other raw materials. The prices of major raw materials used to make poultry feed have gone up by between 50 percent and 100 per cent in the last six months. This anomaly may kill the industry if not quickly addressed.
â€œThe major raw materials include maize, soya bean seed, soya bean meal, which have since increased from N44, 000 per tonne at the beginning of the season to N110, 000 in May,â€ he lamented.
He also called on the government to temporarily remove all duty and Valued Added Tax, VAT on imported corn, feed wheat and soya bean meal to encourage import for short term alleviation of the crisis in the poultry industry. The PAN Chairman also wants the government to fund the research institutes to do more work in the area of hybrid seed in order to give a boost to the industry.
Other stakeholders in the industry at the news conference were the Lagos PAN Chairman, Mr. Agbojo Adedotun and his Oyo counterpart, Engr. John Olateru.