Ghanaian poultry farmers call for halt on imports of chicken

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Poultry farmers in Ghana are entreating Ghanaians to consume poultry products produced in the country.

Poultry farmer in Ghana
Poultry farmer in Ghana

It is estimated that Ghanaians consume only 10% of local poultry while foreign products make up for the remaining 90% of total consumption.

The local poultry farmers are hoping to control 60% of the market share of the total consumption.

Countries importing poultry to Ghana

Poultry imports to Ghana keep increasing because of the high demand and the low domestic commercial poultry meat production. Ghana poultry imports are supplied mainly from the United States, Brazil, and the EU. Supplies from the United States capture over 40% of market share, while European countries and Brazil have 25% each of the market share.

Imported poultry over locally produced

Most consumers have argued that imported poultry products are cheaper as compared to locally produced ones. The local poultry farmers have attributed their high cost of products to the high cost of production.

The imported ones are already cut into parts and ready to use. This reduces the time one spends on imported poultry meat.

As such, the convenience of a ready to use chicken product has boosted consumer demand.

Calls to reduce poultry import over Covid-19 scare in Brazil

The poultry farmers in Ghana have called for poultry import to reduce drastically due to reports that a Brazil-based producer has been suspended by China since coronavirus allegedly started affecting the meat plant.

BRF is Brazil’s largest chicken exporter. It, however, said in a statement on July 29, 2020, that it was not formally informed of the suspension.

Meanwhile, it is reported that the Philippines also imposed a temporary ban on poultry meat imports from Brazil after two cities in China allegedly found traces of the new coronavirus in cargoes of imported frozen food from the South American country.

According to the Poultry Farmers Association in Ghana, this is why they are calling for a ban or reduced import. The Association has been advocating for this long before Ghana recorded its first case of Covid-19.

However, the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) has indicated that there is no evidence of the involvement of animals (livestock and pets) in the spread of the coronavirus.

The FAO rather encourages the usual hygiene practices of washing hands before and after handling or feeding livestock and pets or any meat per normal good practice.

Ghana to end poultry import by 2025

The Ghanaian government through its Ministry of Food and Agriculture indicated earlier this year that it is working to end importation of poultry products over the next five years.

The West African nation is hoping to achieve its target through a program dubbed: Broiler Revitalization

In this programme, the Ministry will produce a total of 20 million day-old chicks and distributed to selected poultry farmers nationwide.

Source: Business Insider Africa 

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