GOVERNMENT is considering putting up a poultry abattoir in Solwezi to meet the high demand of processed chickens in the town and in the neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Speaking at the 13th Poultry Association of Zambia (PAZ) annual general meeting in Lusaka, Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries permanent secretary Dr David Shamulenge said it was high time Zambia started getting value for its poultry products.
“There is high consumption of chicken in the mining industry, particularly Solwezi; we will be putting up an abattoir in North Western Province for the poultry industry to start getting value for its products,” he said.
Dr Shamulenge said the Government had put in place stringent export measures for maize and soybeans aimed at minimizing the potential negative impacts on the poultry industry among others.
He said these measures were aimed at ensuring that the
country had sufficient stocks of soybeans and maize stocks for human and animal consumption.
He said this policy measure coupled with the strengthening of the Kwacha should create an incentive for the stockfeed millers to pass on the benefits to other players in the poultry value chain.
Dr Shamulenge said Government had approved the sector umbrella policy, the second national agricultural policy to fill the gap left by the expiry of the 2004-2025 national agricultural policy.
He said Government would continue to create a conducive business environment for sustainable development of the poultry industry through policy formulation and review.
PAZ national chairperson Rhodnie Sisala said 2016 was projected to be challenging for the poultry industry owing to sustained rising costs of feed.
Mr Sisala said it was anticipated that the industry would this year record a reduction in day-old chicks uptake by about 25 percent especially at small-scale level both in broiler and layer sub-sector.
“It is important to note that these macro-economic challenges are cyclical in nature and are unique to this particular year only. These challenges are likely to spill over into 2017 if the commodity price at the international market does not rebound,” he said.
He advised players in the industry to use efficient methods of production to remain afloat during the challenging times.
And Zambia National Farmers Union (ZNFU) president Dr Evelyn Nguleka called on the Government to speed up the rate at which sector policies were being formulated.