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May 24, 2020

Chicken meat price fixed at Rs260/kg for Eid holidays

Lahore

May 24, 2020

LAHORE : The Punjab government Saturday fixed the chicken meat price at Rs 260 per kilogram for three days of Eid holidays while the further price fixation, and other issues faced by the poultry industry will be reviewed after Eid.

The decision was made in a meeting between the Pakistan Poultry Association and Punjab Minister for Industry and Trade Mian Aslam Iqbal. The government had called leaders of the poultry industry for talks after the supply of chicken meat was halted to markets in the province. With the shortage of chicken meat no rate was decided as the suppliers were unable to supply and the sellers remained idle.

The poultry industry agreed to call off the strike and ensure supply to the market on Eid days. Further, the government will ensure Rs 260 per kg price for chicken meat and take action against overcharging by sellers.

According to Abdul Basit, a veteran businessman of the poultry industry in Pakistan, chicken meat supply was almost 60 percent short after the covid-19 struck.

The Punjab government become a silent spectator when lockdown started and the live chicken price crashed to Rs 60 per kg and farmers stopped production. Chick suppliers threw them away or killed them as the farmers refused producing chicken and closed down their farms due to uncertain conditions, he said.

Abdul Basit said that instead of understanding the intensity of the situation, the Punjab government claimed the credit for reduction in the price, rather than intervene in the situation to stabilise the price. Resultantly, the farmers closed down their farms and now 60 percent shortage is witnessed in the market.

Further, the government started taking chicken from the farm by force which compelled the farmers to close their business, he claimed. Now the situation is that the price of live chicken at farm is Rs 190 per kg while Rs 230 in Sindh while no provincial government is intervening in the business both in KP and Sidh. Contrary to this, the Punjab government has been intervening which resulted it the unavailability of chicken meat in the market, he added. He believed that the government should have intervened when farmers were not lifting chicks from hatcheries and closing farms due to covid-19 lockdown. Now the time has passed and the government is threatening the existing farmers by forcefully taking over their produce which is deplorable, he added.

He suggested that the government should also fix the minimum price of chicken meat likewise other items so that farmers were able to recover their costs and have assurance of getting returns from the business. Otherwise, many other farmers will also leave the business which would further increase the price.