THE Poultry Farmers Association of Nigeria (PAN) said its members lost more than N30 billion worth of over 15 million crates of eggs due to the effect of Naira scarcity in the country.
Mr Sunday Onallo-Akpa, the National President of PAN, made this known on Friday in a statement issued to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja.
“The poultry farmers in the country have lost over 15 million crates of eggs being unsold and are damaged, The average loss to the poultry industry as at this press release is in excess of over N30 billion,” he said.
Onallo-Akpa described the poultry industry in Nigeria as one of the most consolidated subsectors of the Nigeria agriculture contributing about 25 per cent of the Agricultural Gross Domestic Product (AGDP) and employing over 25 million Nigerians direct and indirect.
He said the poultry industry has been a major employer of labour and a great source of financial empowerment and livelihood for many families, especially women and youths.
“The industry is completely private sector driven worth over N3 trillion,” he said, adding that it has been able to contribute to the local domestication of investments in the country.
Onallo-Akpa however alerted that the poultry industry is on the verge of total collapse and extermination because of the negative and devastating consequences of the new currency policy on the industry.
“The near absence of Naira notes for Nigerians to make daily transactions have made businesses in the poultry industry more difficult.
“Eggs being daily produced by poultry farmers since the first week of February 2023 till date have never been offtaken by 20% because of the near absence and lack of the NAIRA notes to buy basic food items and other necessary proteins like eggs and chickens,” said the PAN leader.
He therefore called for urgent intervention by the Federal Government to save the industry from eminent collapse.
Onallo-Akpa also appealed to the federal government to mop up the eggs through the association for distribution to the most vulnerable old populations as part of the Social Investment Support to Nigerians.
“Encourage the Armed Forces in various peace keeping operations, the Nigerian Prisons, the Internally Displaced Persons and primary schools (School Feeding Programme) to be immediate offtakers of the eggs,” he urged.
He also appeal to the Presidency to direct the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), the Directorate of Peace Keeping Operations of the Nigeria Armed Forces, the Social Investment Programme of the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Disaster Management to work with the association on how immediate reliefs can be extended to poultry farmers across the country to prevent the collapse of the poultry Industry.
The PAN president also appealed to the government to make available direct grants and financial support to the industry through the association in special packages to be worked out by the government and the association. (NAN)