HYDERABAD: Poultry industry in the state is facing a severe crisis due to abnormally high prices of maize, soya bean which are used in making poultry feed.
The industry is sounding an SOS to the government. If help does not come to it, then the poultry units will have to close down. Over 25,000 small and marginal farmers and over 20 lakh employees in the state are dependent on the poultry industry.
The industry is seeking government intervention to bring down the prices of ingredients that go into making of the feed. Representatives of AP Poultry Federation met Union minister for agriculture Sharad Pawar and chief minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy recently and urged them to take steps to bring down the prices of soya bean, the main feed for broilers. â€œThe price of soya bean was Rs 18,000 a tonne till 45 days ago but shot up to Rs 32,000 suddenly, making it unaffordable for the poultry industry,'' said D Sudhakar, president of AP Poultry Federation.
Speaking to reporters here on Monday, he said the industry had been reeling under the high costs of feed ingredients, mainly maize and soya bean, for the past two years and urged the government to bring the feed prices down to rescue poultry farmers. He said 11 million tonne of soya bean and 22 million tonne of maize were produced in the country last year though 4 million tonne of soya bean and maize was adequate for the poultry industry. But claiming that a major part of the soya bean crop was being exported to Iran, traders were creating artificial scarcity in the domestic sector, Sudhakar alleged.
â€œAccording to official information, the government is exporting only 2.5 million tonne of the 11 million tonne production every year. Then where is the remaining crop going?'' he wondered and appealed to the government to probe the matter.
Sudhakar also urged the government to go into the difference of export and domestic prices of soaya bean, saying that soya bean was being exported to Iran for `25,000 a tonne and was being sold in the domestic market at Rs 32,000 a tonne.
KV Subba Raju, chairman of NECC, Hyderabad, and others were present.