NAIROBI, KENYA: Over 540,000 broiler farmers in the country have been forced to scale down their operation, over alleged dumping of processed chicken by Uganda farmers.
The farmers through their lobby group added that lockdown has further affected their market due to the sale restriction of eateries and fast food joints that operate twenty-four hours, seven days in a week.
“Because KFC, Chicken Inn’s and other takeaway restaurants are closed by 9 pm, and the sale of hot foods banned during the lockdown, chicken producers have lost a big part of their regular market. Also, many people can’t afford to buy meat anymore, due to job losses,” argued Kiambu Poultry Farmers’ Cooperative Society Director Zack Munyambu.
Munyambu added, that it is frightening to consider that in this challenging situation, Kenya poultry farmers must compete with tax-free chicken from EAC countries.
He claims that neighboring Uganda is dumping over 100,000 kgs of chicken in Kenya every month.
Arthur Kimani a farmer in Wangige said, “We raise 55 000 chicks every 32-day cycle on behalf of a big producer. If the market is weak the producer might scale down the number of cycles in my calendar. This would affect my business and my 12 full-time workers risk losing work because with fewer cycles I might not be able to afford all of them.”
“We have to prioritise our food producers for the sake of food security in this country. Covid-19 is changing our economic outlook and we have to take the necessary precautions to protect ourselves as a nation.”