KENYA – Kenyan poultry farmers are facing significant losses due to the escalation of illegal hatcheries and breeder farms, leading to a rise in the mortality rate of day-old chicks.

Farmers are now urging the government, specifically the Department of Veterinary Services (DVS), to regulate the sector and address this growing problem.

Recently, illegal hatcheries and breeder farms have become a major concern for the country’s poultry sector, as many of these facilities lack the necessary infrastructure, hygiene standards, and veterinary oversight.

The result has been a high mortality rate among day-old chicks, imposing economic burdens on poultry farmers striving to meet the nation’s increasing demand for poultry products.

“The mortality rate among our day-old chicks is unprecedented, and we are unable to compete effectively in the market. We urge the Department of Veterinary Services to step in and protect our industry,” John Kariuki, a poultry farmer from Kiambu County, emphasized the urgency of the situation, stated.

Kenya’s poultry industry plays a critical role in the country’s food security and economic development, making the negative impact of illegal operations even more significant.

In the recent years, poor management practices by unregulated entities has led to weak and vulnerable chicks, resulting in substantial financial losses for legitimate poultry businesses.

Meanwhile, poultry farmers nationwide are now calling on the DVS to launch a comprehensive crackdown on illegal hatcheries and breeder farms.

The farmers are advocating for stricter enforcement of regulations and standards to ensure compliance with health and hygiene requirements.

Additionally, they are requesting government support for legal hatcheries and breeder farms to increase production capacity and meet growing demand.

Jane Mwangi, a leading poultry veterinarian, stressed the importance of addressing the issue promptly, as the health of poultry stocks directly affects the quality of poultry products available to consumers.

She emphasized the need for stringent measures to ensure that only compliant hatcheries and breeder farms are allowed to operate.

According to the DVS the concerns have been taken note of and the department is working on a plan to address the problem.

They have pledged to collaborate with law enforcement agencies to identify and shut down illegal operations, ensuring that only licensed hatcheries and breeder farms operate in the industry.

Despite the challenges posed by illegal hatcheries and breeder farms, Kenyan poultry farmers remain resolute in their commitment to a brighter future where quality and safety are prioritized, allowing the industry to thrive.

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