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Poultry farmers beg FG to save sector

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By Abraham Adekunle

Association urges the government to tackle the rising cost of feed.

The Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN) on November 7, 2023, urged the Federal Government to find a lasting solution to the rising cost of feed in the country. The association made the call during the opening of the 12th edition of the Nigeria Poultry Show in Abeokuta, Ogun State. The show has as its theme “Mitigating the challenges of the poultry industry: Current perspectives, the role of government and the private sector.” PAN noted that the challenge of rising cost of feed as well as other challenges facing the industry.

Its South-West Zone Chairman, Mr. Gideon Oluleye, said that the event was aimed at finding lasting solutions to the challenges facing the poultry industry and revive it. According to Oluleye, the Federal Government needs to review its recent pronouncement on lifting the ban on these products. He said that lifting the ban will collapse the industry in Nigeria. Rather, the government should support the farmers by facilitating easy access to loans.

Ezeobiora decried the high cost of production.

Mr. Oluleye said that it should also help with marketing their products by collaborating with the poultry industry through policies like the school feeding program, as well as feeding at the correctional centers and internally displaced person (IDP) centers. These are situations where poultry products can be included in the feeding scheme. Also speaking, PAN National President, Mr. Sunday Ezeobiora, decried the high cost of production, and listed funding, infrastructure and marketing as some of the present challenges.

He noted that if these are not handled well, they may kill the poultry industry in Nigeria. Commissioners for Agriculture from states in the South West geopolitical zone were present at the occasion. The commissioners from Ogun (Mr. Bolu Owotomo), Lagos (Abisola Olusanya) and Oyo (Mr. Olasunkunmi Oluleye) delivered goodwill messages during the ceremony. They pledged their continuous support for the agriculture sector in their states, pointing out that it was in line with the Federal Government’s move to enhance food production in the country.

Press release on the current situation of the industry.

Meanwhile, on PAN official website, there is a press release on the current situation of the in the country, which is on the precipice of imminent collapse. It was signed by the national president of the association (Chief Sunday Ezeobiora) and the association’s director-general (Onallo Akpa). The press release contained appreciation for the government’s support of the association. This is especially in maintaining the import restriction policy on frozen chicken into Nigeria even though some are still smuggling it into the country. As a result of the import restriction, the local poultry industry has been able to develop with the positive multiplier effects of adequate protein supplies, creation of employment opportunities and wealth for Nigerians.

Essentially, the Industry has been able to contribute about 25 percent to the Agricultural Gross Domestic Products (AGDP) of our national economy. The industry provides about 25 million direct and indirect employment to Nigerians, and is a major source of protein supply to Nigerians thereby sustaining the good health and livelihood of many Nigerians. At the moment, the poultry industry in Nigeria is on the verge of total collapse if an urgent intervention is not channeled to it without further delays. According to the release, the high surges of prices of maize and the near absence or scarcity of the product is causing farmers to close down their poultry farms at the moment because it is no longer sustainable to feed the birds and be in business, thereby threatening the further development.

PAN proposal to FG to save the poultry industry.

Therefore, the leadership association has proposed a number of steps to the Federal Government. One of them is directing both the Nigeria Commodity Exchange (NCX) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), which manages the Strategic Maize Reserve Programme (SMRP) of the CBN, to free the allocations of 40,000 metric tons to be produced through the Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN). The association also urged the government to direct the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural to release 20,000 metric tons of maize from the Strategic Food Reserves of the Ministry to the poultry industry through PAN at discounted prices so as to mitigate the current challenges to the production in the country.

Related Link

Poultry Association of Nigeria: Website

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