CAMEROON – The Cameroonian government has implemented regulatory measures, in response to the rising prices of these essential food items that have been impacting households across the country.

François Djonou, the head of the national poultry interprofessional organization (Ipavic), announced that the government has established new price standards for chickens and eggs.

According to the directive issued on October 23, the farm-gate price for chickens weighing between 1.8 and 2 kilograms will be CFA2,300, and the price of a 30-egg tray will now range between CFA1,900 and CFA2,100, depending on the product’s size.

These prices will be subject to regular adjustments to account for changes in the cost of raw materials.

Until now, market prices for chickens and eggs in Cameroon are solely determined by supply and demand, without regulation from Ipavic or the Cameroonian Trade Ministry.

The newly agreed-upon prices result from collaboration with producers and apply specifically to chicken purchases directly from the farm, with the impact on consumer market prices remaining uncertain.

Reports from households indicated that chicken prices have been on the rise, with a 2-kilogram chicken now reaching between CFA4,000 and CFA4,500 on Douala markets, compared to CFA3,000 before August 2023.

In Yaoundé, the situation is even more challenging, with consumers having to spend between CFA4,000 and CFA4,500 for a 1.5-kilogram chicken and between CFA5,000 and CFA6,000 for a 2 to 2.5-kilogram bird.

Ipavic attributed this surge in prices to intermediaries and speculators and aimed to regulate farm-gate prices to control distributor margins in the consumer market.

These regulatory actions came in response to a letter from the Trade Minister, Luc Magloire Mbarga Atangana, dated October 19, in which he called on poultry farmers to significantly reduce chicken and egg prices in Cameroonian markets.

The call was based on the government’s cost calculations for chicken and egg production and aims to address the high cost of living in the country.

Despite the positive trend in broiler chicken production, which saw an 18% increase in 2021 compared to the previous year, the poultry sector still represents a smaller share of the country’s meat production compared to the beef sector, accounting for 19% of the total meat produced in Cameroon, with beef dominating at 46%.

Meanwhile, there is ongoing development of a large-scale poultry farm in Bamendjou in western Cameroon, with a total cost of 3 billion FCFA.

The project, initiated by Cameroonian surgeon Pascal Talla, includes two giant production buildings with a cumulative capacity of 80,000 layers.

The farm will also feature a food production line for self-sufficiency, an egg production unit, and a modern broiler house to supply local farmers, to bolster the local poultry industry and food security in the country.

Dr. Taïga, the Cameroonian Minister of Livestock, Fisheries, and Animal Industries, visited the site and highlighted provisions for equipment exemptions to support modernization in the poultry sector.

He encouraged both the diaspora and local economic operators to invest in the industry.