A poultry expert, Mr Joel Oduware, has predicted looming crisis in the poultry industry following the lockdown of interstate borders amidst the coronavirus pandemic.
Oduware, an expert in poultry processing made this known in a telephone interview in Lagos.
The expert said the COVID-19 pandemic had really affected the poultry industry owing to the closure of the inter-state borders to curb the spread of the deadly disease.
“The closure of the inter-state borders will not help the poultry industry, including the food and livestock market because most of us depend on it for daily sustenance.
“Now Lagos, Abuja and Ogun have been shut down but the transporters of livestock and poultry should be allowed to access these states or there will be crisis in the poultry industry.
“Like in Lagos for example, most of the live chicken we sell or process are sourced from poultries outside the state like Osun, Oyo and other neighbouring states.
“If there is total breakdown in the supply chain of the poultry industry, it will collapse the sector as so many poultry farms will be forced to close shop.
“Before the lockdown, there should have been measures put in place to ensure food supply to the markets, or to the poultry farms,” Oduware said.
The expert added that the continuous lockdown of the interstate borders might result in losses for the poultry industry if the food supply chain was not quickly reopened.
He said the birds would die if the lockdown continued for long as there would be no access to water or to feed for the poultry, resulting in immense losses.
“With the closure of the inter-state border, we will witness glut in the poultry sub-sector but I believe the poultry farms can bounce back because the loss can be temporary.
“However if the losses are colossal, it will be hard for the poultry farms to bounce back which in turn will be inimical to the poultry industry.
“The government should have insisted on stepping up of bio-security measures in the abattoirs, and fowl markets at the entrance points.
“Livestock, poultry, food and general agriculture produce should be allowed to go through all interstate borders.
“Closing the food market, slaughter slabs and even poultry is not necessary to be done in the first place,” he said.