THE Zimbabwe Poultry Association (ZPA) is in the process of setting up an anonymous tip-off initiative to curb the proliferation of illegal imports threatening viability of the industry.
BY MTHANDAZO NYONI
Chicken imports, particularly from Brazil and South Africa, have continued to flood the local market, choking the local poultry industry.
For instance, in 2015, between January and September, the country imported about 1,5 million kilogrammes of chicken valued at $800 000 from South Africa, figures not captured in official statistics.
This is despite the fact that Zimbabwe imposed a duty of $1,50 per kilogramme on imported chicken in 2012 in a bid to protect local producers.
In an industry update, ZPA chairperson, Solomon Zawe said reports of illegal imports of chicken offals, gizzards, heads and feet continue to be received.
“ZPA and its sister organisations under the Livestock and Meat Advisory Council are in the process of setting up an anonymous tip-off initiative to try to curb proliferation of illegal imports,” he said.
Meanwhile, Zawe said despite a slight improvement in broiler breeder trends in the last quarter of 2016, breeder chick retentions and growing birds in the first quarter of 2017 were 18 and 16% lower than the same period last year and the lowest first quarter figures since 2013.
And while breeders in-lay were 15% up on 2016, these are the second lowest first quarter stocks since 2013, he said.
“The number of birds processed and broiler meat production in the formal sector in the first quarter of 2017 was 3% and 6% lower than the same period in 2016, respectively,” Zawe said.
“Wholesale prices have continued to firm over the past nine months with the whole bird price increasing from a four-year low of $2,74 in July 2016 to $3,25 in March 2017.”
He said, together with a decline of 6% in large-scale meat production in the first quarter of 2017, small-scale production is estimated to have declined by 19% resulting in a 15% decline in total meat production to 7,965mt per month.