Kathmandu, May 14
Thousands of poultry farmers and entrepreneurs in Nepal are confused about the future of their business after the market demand of chicken meat and eggs has significantly dropped after the government reported the first death from bird flu two weeks ago.
The entrepreneurs, however, complain that the shakeout of their business is unfair as the disease can be transmitted from other sources as well, and no one has evidence that the victim had consumed any chicken or meat product.
Hari Krishna Rawal, who owns Valley Cold Store, one of the biggest poultry suppliers of the country, objects to the government’s inability to make public which bird exactly transmitted the virus to the victim.
The entrepreneurs highlight that no poultry worker has been infected of the disease, arguing the chickens and eggs produced from their farms are safe to consume.
Nevertheless, Rawal informs that the use of chicken meat has dropped by 30 per cent since the news report of death came out.
Likewise, the price of poultry products has heavily come down. A young chick would cost Rs 85 on average, but it is available for as low as Rs 30 these days, according to him.
Shiva Ram KC, former chairperson of Nepal Egg Producers Association, informs that the price of egg has also decreased to Rs 6.15 from Rs 13.
He informs that the country produces more than 2.6 million eggs everyday.
Meanwhile, potential investors who were planning to launch their businesses have also withdrawn after the market shakeout, according to stakeholders.
The entrepreneurs demand that the government and experts intervene to clear rumours and save the market from collapse.
“The businesspersons, from small farmers to multimillion rupee investors, have made maximum efforts to make their products healthy. But, their confidence has dropped now,” Rawal says, demanding that the government become serious about the issue.
Published on May 14th, Tuesday, 2019 11:31 AM
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