500 Farmers From Kiambu Abandon Poultry Over Costly Feeds

By Jane Muia / Published August 30, 2022 | 10:20 am




KEY POINTS

More than 500 poultry farmers from the Kiambu Poultry farmers cooperative have abandoned the business as a result of costly feeds.


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KEY TAKEAWAYS


A 50kg bag of dairy meal is retailing at 2,800 shillings up from the 2,500 shillings in April. Layers' mash price has also surged to reach 4,500 shillings from 3,800 shillings in April while broiler feed has reached a high of 6,000 shillings per bag.


The high cost of animal feeds has been on a rising spree since March, pushing some farmers to abandon poultry farming in fear of losses.

For instance in Kiambu county, more than 500 poultry farmers from the Kiambu Poultry farmers cooperative have abandoned the business as a result of costly feeds.

“By 2021, the cooperative had about 700 farmers but currently, only about 120 are remaining and they are still struggling. As a cooperative, we produce our own animal feeds and sell them to our members, but getting soya and maize germ has been a big challenge,” said Zachary Munyambo Chairman of the Kiambu poultry farmers’ cooperative.

Currently, a 50kg bag of dairy meal is retailing at 2,800 shillings up from the 2,500 shillings in April. Layers’ mash price has also surged to reach 4,500 shillings from 3,800 shillings in April while broiler feed has reached a high of 6,000 shillings per bag.

Farmers now decry a high cost of production as the cost of rearing one chick has increased to 850 shillings from 580 shillings last year. This has pushed some farmers to downsize their flocks or halt businesses citing losses.

Statistics from Tegemeo Institute suggest that the cost of feeds directly impacts the competitiveness of the livestock value chain. The farmers now want the government to speed up the importation of genetically modified maize and Soya.

Last year, the ministry of agriculture proposed a duty-free waiver for raw materials to cushion farmers from the high cost of feeds, which saw consumers spend more on food.

The government also licensed the importation of 10 million duty-free bags of yellow maize, where the first consignment arrived late last month. The 40,000 metric notes were supplied to only 4 feed milling companies. The import has been delayed due to fears about the safety of the commodity following its 2012 ban.

Association of Kenya Feed Manufacturers Secretary-general Martin Kinoti earlier said that this year’s feed situation is worse than last year.

Related Content: Mycoplasmas The Killer Poultry Disease That Farmers Should Watch Out






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