The Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN) has attributed the current scarcity of eggs and rising costs of poultry produce to reduced productivity of the sector. The Chairman of PAN in Lagos State, Mr Godwin Egbebe, disclosed this to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday.
Egbebe said that due to the harsh realities being faced in the sector, a lot of farms had been forced to close down which had resulted in low supply of the produce. According to him, the scarcity of eggs and the rising cost of the produce is not far fetched as many poultry farms have closed and many about to fold up.
“The high cost of farm inputs and feed meal materials are very expensive due to a potpourri of issues in the agriculture sector.nCrop farmers have always complained about insecurity issues which in turn resulted in increasing their costs of cultivation and these costs are also factored in the cost of raw materials we need to produce poultry feed.
“Now that demand is higher than supply because of the closing up of more poultry farms, we are not producing as much as we should,” Egbebe said.
The PAN chair also noted that egg glut (a situation of excess egg production) was now a thing of the past in the sector following the issues being faced. He called for government intervention to genuine farmers in the sector to address the inadequacies inherent.
“Egg glut is technically over in Nigeria because of the scarcity of eggs to meet the growing demands. We must tackle the issues surrounding procurement of raw materials and farm inputs, if we want an end to increasing prices of poultry produce and scarcity of eggs.
“The government can intervene in the poultry sector by pumping in necessary financial help to ease production costs,” he said.
Egbebe said that interventions would help farmers that are closing up if it was done directly to them and not to pseudo or political farmers.
“Genuine farmers should be given bailouts by the government and this should go through the Poultry Associations because we can know our members. Sometimes it is baffling to hear that billions of Naira has been pumped into the sector, yet it does not get to us,” he said.
He said that farmers should see the direct impact of government’s funding on the sector, and people should be held accountable.
“The scarcity of eggs and the subsequent increasing price cannot get better until things improve in the sector,” he said.
NAN reports that the cost of a crate of egg at the farm gate goes as high as N2,000 per crate and between N2,300 to N2,500 at retail price .
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