The opposition Voice of the People Party (VPP) has expressed concerns that local chicken farmers are being priced out of the market during Christmas as outsiders capture the market by undercutting their local competitors.
At Christmas and New Year there is a spike in the demand for meat, which should mean “a period of boom” for animal farmers, the VPP said in a letter to the state government.
However, the VPP has seen that producers and suppliers flood the local market with cheaper chicken “in order to gain market share and push local firms out of the business.”
“This is an unethical business practice by the outsiders at the cost of the local farmers/producers/suppliers,” the party added.
The inflow of poultry from outside the state also poses a threat to the health and safety of the consumers since there is no proper system in place to check the health of the birds coming from outside, it claimed.
“In light of the points mentioned above, we strongly urge the government to immediately intervene in the matter by taking restrictive measures to stop the inflow of poultry birds and other animals for human consumption in the interest of the local producers or by setting a remunerative price in the interest of the genuine local producers,” the VPP said. “Furthermore, it is suggested that government intervention in terms of insurance, subsidies on animal farm inputs and a tax policy on imported animals for revenue earning and thus protecting and encouraging the local animal farmers.”