Crumble: Poultry Industry becomes latest victim of COVID-19
Due to lockdown, no feed available for chickens: Poultry Farmers
Pulwama: The poultry industry has been hit hard by the outbreak of covid-19 as rumours about the spread of coronavirus through consuming chicken spread far and across in Kashmir valley.
Poultry farmers say that the sales have dipped by 80 percent as the prices of poultry products have fallen by miles leading to the financial loss in crores to the people associated with the poultry industry.
“Under normal circumstances, we purchase one day old broiler chicks for Rs 30 to 45 and after feeding the chick for about 30 to 40 days, it costs us around Rs 110 to 150. However, the situation is so averse that we are not able to fetch Rupees 40 per chicken,” said Ajaz Ahmad, a poultry farm owner.
“The situation is so grave that the birds we have at our farms are dying due to starvation as we don’t have feed available for them,” he added.
Notably, almost all the feed required for the poultry and farm industry comes from outside states.
“There is no feed manufacturing industry in Kashmir, due to which we were getting feed from states like Punjab and Haryana. However, due to lockdown we are unable to bring feed for the birds,” said Javid Ahmad, another poultry farmer from Pulwama district.
“I have around 18000 birds at three farms at the moment and usually I have to feed them 20 bags per day. But with no feed available I am curtailing their supply and feeding them mere three bags a day. The result is that hundreds of birds have perished due to starvation,” he added.
“The misinformation passed on through social media about the spread of virus through poultry and eggs has reduced prices drastically,” said another farmer.
He said that loss is so high that we can’t restart our business again if government won’t come for our rescue.