KATHMANDU, April 6: Poultry entrepreneurs are worried about scarcity of chicken in the market even after the lockdown is lifted by the government.
“Customers should not be worried about the high price of chicken in the market after the lockdown is over but they should worry that chicken will be available in the market or not,” said Gun Chandra Bista, chairperson of Nepal Poultry Federation, “Poultry entrepreneurs are facing daily losses of Rs 220 million, which is only indirect calculation and no one desires to be involved in this sector facing huge losses.
”Poultry farmers are facing shortages of grains to feed the chickens in their farms and most of them are dumping the chickens due to the restrictions imposed by the government during the lockdown period.
“Half of the farmers involved in the poultry sector will leave this industry after facing huge losses. They have no hope of getting their investment back. No one dares to invest in this sector which even does not pay your investment,” said Bista, “Ultimately there will be very few people involved in the poultry sector and with less production and high demand, the price of chicken will increase with the scarcity in the market.
”Due to the lockdown, all the meat shops, hotels and restaurants are closed and consumption of meat has significantly decreased. The poultry industry is facing shortages of grains, lack of transport vehicles and staff which have contributed to huge losses for the industry.
“Before the lockdown, the retail price of chicken was Rs 240 per kg and as of Friday, the price of chicken is Rs 270 per kg. We cannot assume how much the price of chicken will increase in upcoming days but we are worried if the poultry industry can recover after facing such losses,” said Junga Bahadur BC, President of Nepal Chicken Sellers Association.
Nepal is self-sufficient in poultry products. However, farmers often complain that they are not getting fair prices for their products. The government has even put a ban on poultry imports from India to ensure that Nepal's poultry farmers get better return on their investment.
According to experts, the lockdown has affected the poultry industry and the government will have to adopt various measures to address the problem which will decide the future of poultry industry in Nepal.