31 October 2023, BusinessTech.co.za
The Association of Meat Importers and Exporters of Southern Africa (AMIE) says that the government needs to take emergency action and treat the ongoing chicken and egg crisis as a crisis, or else consumers will continue to suffer the brunt of shortages in the country.
South Africa is in the midst of a significant chicken and egg shortage after a high pathogenicity avian influenza (HPAI) strain decimated stocks.
According to the SA Poultry Association (SAPA), so far, 5 million birds have been culled this year, representing 20% of the country’s commercial layer flock.
Notably, 30% (2.5 million) of the national broiler breeder population have been culled. These are the parent birds that produce the genetic stock for the overall chicken population.
The AMIE said that the shortages have already filtered through to shelf prices, with wholesalers reporting a sharp increase in prices since the onset of the influenza outbreaks.