By Modupe Gbadeyanka
At least 10.3 billion eggs are produced domestically in Nigeria every year, the Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN) has disclosed.
Addressing journalists at a press conference in Lagos recently, National President of PAN, Dr Ayoola Oduntan, noted that there is a vast array of employment opportunities lying within the poultry value chain, but government and the people must take it seriously to ensure that it is not only sustained but made to grow as agriculture is truly the future of the country.
According to him, the eradication of imported poultry products in Nigeria will create one million jobs within two years and bring hundreds of billions into the economy in revenue.
Dr Oduntan, while addressing newsmen ahead of the annual poultry show and summit themed ‘Sustaining the Poultry industry in an economic recession’, said Nigeria remains the largest producer of eggs in Africa.
Speaking on the influx of imported poultry products, he lamented that Nigerians spend between N600 billion to N700 billion on smuggled chicken and urged the government and citizens to encourage and support poultry farmers in the country.
Also, he expressed fears that his members would get raw materials at a higher cost this year as a result of exportation of critical raw materials.
“If feed millers are receiving raw materials, maize, soya at a high cost, it means the hike in feed price isn’t the making of the manufacturer, then the entire cost of production will go up,” he said.
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