Nigeria’s Plateau State intervenes to cushion farmers from egg glut

NIGERIA –  The government of Nigeria’s plateau state has intervened to cushion farmers in its state from the current egg glut that is impacting farmers across the West African nation.

The state’s intervention came in form of a market clean up exercise that saw some 5,000 crates of eggs from the Plateau branch of the Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN)

Speaking during an egg distribution drive, Plateau State Governor Simon Lalong noted that buying eggs was the first step the state had taken to help poultry farmers from incurring losses.

The state’s schools, hospitals, detention facilities, and orphanages have been ear marked as the first recipients of the mop-up, according to Hosea Finangwai, commissioner of agriculture.

PAN Chairman in the state, Johnson Bagudu, commended the government for the gesture adding that the initiative would also aid in luring back many farmers who had abandoned their businesses.

At the national level, calls are intensifying for the federal government to intervene with PAN national publicity secretary Godwin Egbebe saying government intervention at all levels was necessary to cushion farmers from possible losses.

Mr Egbebe said farmers had reduced the prices of eggs in an attempt to lure buyers at the expense of their profit margins.

“At large farm gates, a crate of eggs now goes for as low as N1,700 and N1,800 as against N2,000 or N2,100 that was sold just weeks ago,” Egbebe revealed.

PAN has blamed the current egg glut on limited cash in circulation. “ The egg glut is on the increase; the farmers are churning out eggs every day, but there are low demands following the cash crunch in the country,” Mr Egbebe stated.

He further noted that traders were taking advantage of the opportunity to exploit desperate farmers. “The marketers and middles have used this opportunity to collect eggs on credit and still refuse to pay,” lamented Mr. Mojeed Iyiola, the Pan Lagos state chairman.

Without markets, farmers have been hardpressed financially, and were now struggling to maintain their poultry operations.

“A lot of poultry farmers are in dire straits presently, as they do not even have the money to buy feed for their birds resulting in a spike in mortality rates,” Iyiola said.

Mr. Iyiola warns that if sustainable interventions are not made soon, the poultry sector in Nigeria will gradually decline resulting in massive loss of income.

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