Stakeholders in the poultry industry are sounding the alarm over the impending collapse of the sector if urgent interventions are not implemented soon.
The industry is grappling with multiple crises, including a sharp rise in the prices of essential construction materials, which threaten to cripple operations.
Retail prices for poultry products have surged in recent months, with the cost of a crate now averaging N3,600 and a single egg priced at N150, depending on location and size. These exorbitant prices could exacerbate the country’s malnutrition crisis, as highlighted in the 2022 Nigeria Bureau of Statistics (NBS) Demographic Statistics Bulletin, which revealed that nine out of every 10 Nigerian children do not consume eggs or dairy products.
Furthermore, the soaring prices are attributed to various factors, including the escalating costs of maize and soybean meal, which constitute 75% of poultry feed. The prices of these crucial components have nearly doubled in recent months, driven by scarcity and currency fluctuations.
Poultry farmers are grappling with significant financial losses, forcing many to abandon their businesses. The situation has been further compounded by insecurity, as attacks on poultry farms have led to closures and relocations.
Stakeholders are calling on the government to intervene by releasing grain reserves and addressing the challenges facing the poultry industry. Failure to take action could lead to a further increase in food insecurity and malnutrition rates, particularly among vulnerable children.
The escalating prices of poultry products pose a significant threat to public health, as access to affordable sources of protein becomes increasingly out of reach for many families. Urgent measures are needed to stabilize the poultry sector and ensure the availability of nutritious food for all Nigerians.