Why African Countries Are Protecting Their Poultry Markets

Why African Countries Are Protecting Their Poultry Markets

From ThePoultrySite. Story by Tawanda Karombo.

African poultry markets are on the rise, and governments in countries such as Ghana and South Africa are seeking to capitalize on this through measures aimed at protecting hard-pressed local producers, while also opening up to imports from other producers such as the U.S.

South Africa, which has finally agreed to allow chicken imports from the U.S., is investigating measures to protect its local market from oversupply by European Union member countries.

South Africa is a big poultry market that is strategically positioned to feed into regional countries such as Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Malawi and Botswana.

South Africa has already imposed duties to curb dumping produce from the E.U. Now it’s mulling measures to restrict boned chicken portions from the E.U.

The South African Poultry Producers Association complained that E.U.-sourced bone-in chicken products were “threatening to cause a serious disturbance in the South African market”.

Poultry producers failed to stop the South African government from allowing imports from the U.S. under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). Violating AGOA could have attracted heavy trade penalties.

The Association of Meat Importers and Exporters of South Africa said it’s ready to handle over 60,000 tonnes of poultry destined from the U.S.

Zambia is boosting its poultry industry and has called on investors to sink money into the lucrative industry.

Jonathan Simwawa, export development director for the Zambia Development Agency said the poultry sector in Zambia presents opportunities but is held back by lack of funding to boost capacity.

“Zambians consume a lot of poultry products which makes the sector very attractive for investment. There is a huge market for poultry products locally,” said Simwawa.

Zambia is also a member of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC), two markets that have potential for about 480 million consumers.

“Zambia (should be) the first investment destination as it is strategically located with eight neighboring countries and the COMESA and SADC market in addition to the local market,” Simwawa said.

In West Africa, Ghana’s Ministry of Food and Agriculture is taking measures to reduce imported poultry products in the country. Other West African countries are grappling with illegal chicken and egg imports.

Foreign producers supply about 58 percent of the country’s poultry needs while local producers account for a 42 percent, according to the Agriculture Ministry in Ghana. Restricting foreign poultry imports will help local producers boost their output.

“We are putting in place (measures) to make sure … we have a future where employment is created in our country by reviving the poultry industry,” said Hannah Bissiw, Ghana’s Deputy Agriculture Minister.

Ghanaian poultry producers face challenges marketing their products, especially eggs, according to the Dormaa Poultry Farmers Association.

Association’s chairman Nana Sebreku said local producers, in association with the National Association of Poultry Farmers, is working to establish a broiler processing and preservation plant in the region.

Poultry production is the fastest growing industry in Gambia, says poultry producer Amadou Demba. Companies such as Reliance Financial Services are helping producers with funding to boost their productive capacity.

“We want more investors to invest in poultry production,” Demba said.

Read more at ThePoultrySite.