After Rs 2,500 cr loss, poultry industry looks to recovery

Banks on govt’s go-ahead to sale of meat, eggs at end of Navratras

After Rs 2,500 cr loss, poultry industry looks to recovery

Sushil Manav

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 2

Almost on the verge of collapse due to Covid outbreak, Haryana’s poultry industry in hoping for a partial revival with the end of Navratras.

The state government’s go-ahead to the sale of eggs, poultry, meat and fish during the lockdown is also expected to breathe life into the poultry industry, which has suffered losses to the tune of over Rs 2,500 crore in the past one month.

During Navratras, chicken prices in the wholesale market went down to Rs 35 per kg. Already, there were no takers for it due to Covid scare. Not long ago, chicken fetched a price of Rs 120 per kg. 

Rumours to blame?

  • The poultry industry across the country has been hit hard by Covid amid fears that the disease can be transmitted through consumption of chicken, mutton, eggs and other non-vegetarian foods
  • Though medical experts have been dispelling rumours since the onset of the outbreak, many stopped eating non-vegetarian foods
  • The end of the Navratras and the state government's go-ahead to the sale of eggs, poultry, meat and fish during the lockdown is expected to breathe life into the poultry industry

Raja Sekhar Vundru, Principal Secretary, Animal Husbandry and Dairying Department, Haryana, had issued an order that all municipal and rural bodies should not only allow sale of eggs, poultry meat, meat and fish as an essential commodity, but also spread awareness on consumption of these in their respective areas.

“The Government of India, in its letter dated March 30, has already clarified that chicken and eggs are a cheap source of protein and boost immunity. It added that the Covid virus is not spread through poultry and poultry products,” Vundru had said in his letter.

Surinder Bhutani, general secretary of the Central Haryana Poultry Farmers Association, said sales had improved ever since the government allowed sale of poultry products, though the number of customers was still less, which could be due to Navratras.

“We expect sales to pick up once Navratras end, though there is no scope of our business regaining its lost glory since hotels, restaurants and dhabas from where the maximum demand came are still closed,” said Bhutani.

He said many poultry farmers culled their birds to save expenditure on feed and medicines. “But then there are a few who are hoping against hope and expecting sales to get better from tomorrow,”he explained.

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