There are indications that the country’s average price of poultry feed has risen by at least 168 per cent in the last three years amidst persistent rise in prices of feed ingredients such as maize and soya. New Telegraph gathered that this has resulted to a broiler being sold for between N5,500 and N7,000 as against N1,500 and N2,500 in 2018, while a crate of eggs rose from N800 to N1,800.
In addition, this is a huge surge that underlines the scale of Nigeria’s food inflation in the last few years. On average, a 25 kilogramme of poultry feed, made mainly from maize, soybean, wheat and millet, rose from N3,600 in 2019 to between N8,500 and N10,000 in July 2022, according to market surveys by the Centre for Journalism and Innovation Development (CJID). Food prices in Nigeria accelerated 20.6 per cent in June over the previous year, the fastest pace in 11 months, according to the National Bureau of Statistics. Headline inflation shot to 18.60 per cent, a five-year high. Prices of goods and services have skyrrocketed in Nigeria stoked by several factors. Inflation worsened in 2019 after government closed the borders to check smuggling to boost rice production and other essential food production. But low domestic production slowed supplies amid huge demand driving prices.
The pandemic lockdown, shortage of foreign currency, insecurity, high fuel prices and, lately, Russia’s war in Ukraine, complicated the problem. Indeed, the National President of Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN), Ezekiel Ibrahim, in a chat with New Telegraph, explained that the 168 per cent price hike was occasioned by several challenges faced by poultry farmers in the country, suas as the persistent rise in the prices of feed ingredients like maize and soya. He said Nigeria’s poultry industry was worth $4.2 billion, citing the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisation, adding it’s also a major protein source for over 200 million people. According to him, but the sector, which contributes nine to 10 per cent to the GDP, has struggled in the last three years and many operators have abandoned their businesses due to high costs.
The renowned poultry farmer stated that his members were lamenting the high feed costs and traders complain about the costs of the constantly rising ingredients. Ibrahim explained the current developments in the country’s poultry sector over skyrocketing prices in animal feeds and cost of production following shortage of foreign exchange nationwide.
He said: “It might interest you to know that poultry farmers are facing serious challenges ranging from the consistent rise in the prices of feed ingredients such as maize and soya, especially. “The decision was borne out of the desire to safeguard the poultry industry from the imminent collapse and to keep our members in business.” Another poultry farmer and Chairman of the 2021 Poultry Show for South West states, Olalekan Odunsi, stated that poultry farmers were facing lots of socio-economic challenges, which are negatively affecting the industry. Odunsi lamented that insecurity, high cost of animal feeds and exchange rate had forced some poultry farmers out of business, saying these challenges have affected a number of poultry farmers, forcing many of them to close shops.