Bird Flu: Chicken consumption plunges by 40 percent
By K Shiva Kumar - MYSORE
08th November 2012 09:55 AM
The outbreak of avian influenza near Bangalore leading to culling of hundreds of birds has cast its shadow on the poultry industry here as the consumption has dipped by 40 per cent.
Most poultry and chicken unit owners said poor demand has resulted in chicken prices coming down to Rs 70 to Rs 80 a kg from Rs 130 a kg. Egg price that had shot up to Rs 44 a dozen is now Rs 30.
The prices had recently recovered and stabilised to Rs 130 after the Kerala government lifted its ban and permitted import of chicken and eggs from Tamil Nadu.
Uday Kumar, a chicken and egg dealer, said he hoped the prices would recover in a couple of days. Another poultry owner clarified that bird flu has not been reported in the region.
The Mysore poultry industry produces more than 15 lakh eggs per day and supplies 12 lakh eggs and 1.2 lakh kg of chicken to North Kerala, including Kasargod, Kannur and Calicut.
The Kerala market is important as it is the highest consumer of poultry compared to other southern states.
During a meeting of the National Egg Co-ordination committee office-bearers, led by Mysore Zone convenor Satish Babu, they apprised the Animal Husbandry officials that culling of turkey near Bangalore has no impact on the poultry here as the live birds are medicated and monitored by doctors.
The officials assured lifting the ban on Karnataka products only if it is certified by the Union government that the region is free from bird flu.
Kerala also banned supply of feed from Karnataka, but lifted it after it was clarified that it is not infectious.
Satish Babu said that they have prevailed on the Animal Husbandry Minister and Principal Secretary Aravind Jannu to write to the Kerala government that the live birds and eggs in Mysore are free from avian influenza also known as bird flu.
Meanwhile, the poultry owners say there is a ray of hope as the prices of egg that has dipped to `30 a dozen has seen a slight rise of 25 paise each egg after the Kerala government lifted its ban on import of eggs from Tamil Nadu.
The poultry owners said they expect another hike of 25 paise in a day or two.
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