By Aluta News
Dec 1, 2023
The Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN) has urged the Federal Government to halt export of maize and soybeans to ensure availability of the commodities and reduction in cost of poultry production.
Ichie Ezeobiora, National President of PAN, made the appeal at the 2nd edition of the Nigerian Poultry Summit on Friday in Abuja with the theme “A Foundation for Food Security and National Development.’’
Ezeobiora, who identified maize and soybeans as a major source of poultry feed and contributing factor to high cost of poultry production due to insufficiency in the country, said exporting the commodities would further compound the challenges in the industry.
“It is being observed that some people are already on the prowl to export all the basic staple grains out of the country this season there by threatening the food security and nutrition of the country.
“Since over 70 per cent of the cost of poultry production is grains that is maize and soybeans, the average Nigerians have been bedeviled with high cost of production orchestrated by prices of raw materials.’’
The president listed other challenges as COVID-19 outbreak which paralysed all businesses globally, CBN currency redesign policy and multiple taxation.
Others, according to him, are the dearth of infrastructure such as stable electricity, pipe borne water and post-harvest losses to farmers due to epileptic or inadequate electricity supply and high tariffs and high cost of production.
Ezeobiora, who identified poultry industry as the most capitalised sub sector of the country’s agricultural sector, said it contributed over 25 per cent to the livestock agricultural GDP to national economy.
He further said the sector worth over N10 trillion and had provided over 10 million direct and indirect employment to those involved in the entire value chain of poultry production.
He said that the industry made it possible for the increased utilisation of the staple crops like maize and soybeans which constitute over 70 per cent of the cost of poultry production.
“The industry has been facing worst challenges in the past four years to an extent that the gains recorded in the last 20 years will be eroded and wasted.
“The country will be the worst if the Federal Government does not come in to support the industry at the moment.
“We cannot afford once again to become the poultry dumping ground for Europe, America and South American countries,” he said.
The president listed other achievements of the sector as poultry production standardisation and certification and robust collaboration locally and international organisations.
Ezeobiora said such collaboration had helped to build the capacities of poultry producers and those in the entire value chain.
“Example is the tripartite partnership between PAN and the U.S. Soya Export Council and the council has trained Nigerians on various aspects of poultry, aquaculture, agronomy especially on soybeans production, feed milling and other extrusion technologies,” he said.