ALOR SETAR, June 21 — The poultry industry is now in the process of returning production capacity to the maximum level to ensure the country does not face the lack of poultry supply as before.
Agriculture and Food Industries Minister Datuk Seri Ronald Kiandee said the country’s chicken production capacity reached 106 per cent before facing the shortage of chicken supply two to three months ago.
“Earlier, the percentage of the country’s chicken production was so high that it could be exported, but due to several internal and external factors including disease problems, increased demand, lack of manpower and so on, the supply of chicken was disrupted.
“The maximum production is needed to meet the chicken consumption rate between 1.8 to two million birds a day before the chicken price is floated according to the market starting July 1,” he said when asked about the current situation of chicken supply in the country.
Earlier, Ronald visited the chicken factory and farm owned by Bismi Empire Sdn Bhd (BISMI) near here to inspect the chicken farming operations as well as obtain information directly from industry players on any issues or related problems encountered.
In the meantime, he said his ministry was also monitoring the supply of chicken in the next two to three weeks to ensure it was sufficient before reviewing the ban on chicken export to other countries.
“In the last few weeks, we have seen that the chicken supply has stabilised. If the entire poultry industry can operate at the maximum level, we can achieve two million chicken consumption a day and there will be no shortage as before, ” Ronald said.
Meanwhile, when asked about the price of chicken which is expected to increase when floated, he said after this the price of chicken will be determined by the market which is expected at more than RM8.90 per kilogramme after the government withdrew the subsidy of RM1.40 given to farmers earlier.
“With the floating concept, the price of chicken will go up according to the market price. The subsidy will be withdrawn, as announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, and aid in the form of cash assistance would be directly channelled to the B40 group.
“Even if the price of chicken goes up, the government will always monitor so that no party tries to take advantage to reap more profits,” said Ronald.
He said the government was also allowing the import of live cattle to ensure the supply of cattle by Aidiladha was sufficient, but the livestock has to undergo a quarantine process set by the Veterinary Services Department.