Poultry industry not neglected
The Department of Animal Production and Health has taken steps to
develop the poultry industry and increase production said Director
General of the Department of Animal Production and Health, Peradeniya,
Dr. Nimal Chandrasiri.
"The Department has launched an islanwide disease surveillance
program to protect livestock and prevent the spread of bird flu and
other contagious diseases", he said.
The All-Island Poultry Association said that the poultry industry has
not got sufficient attention to solve some of the recurring problems of
Chairman All-Island Poultry Association, Dr. D. Wanasinghe said that
the poultry industry makes a vital contribution to the country but has
not received proper attention as given to other livestock industries.
"The import of chicken has an adverse effect on small scale poultry
farmers who are unable to store stocks due to lack of proper storage
facilities", he said.
The Poultry Association has requested policy makers to reduce the
local tax on a kilo of chicken which is a burden to poultry farmers.
Dr. Chandrasiri said the import of chicken has helped provide
adequate stocks to the market and stabilise the price of chicken.
"The need to import chicken arose due to shortage of stock during the
festive season", he said.
The government imported eggs and chicken from India to avert a
shortage of stock and stabilise the price during the festive season.
"The Department of Animal Production and Health has done a lot to
protect and develop the poultry industry. Steps have been taken to
improve hatcheries, health of birds and permit the import of parent
stock", Dr. Chandrasiri said.
"There is no threat of the spread of the bird flu as regular
surveillance is carried out to check the outbreak of any disease in the
country. The import of chicken from bird flu affected countries is
banned", the Director General said.
The spread of bird flu has been controlled to a great extent in
countries through surveillance and regular health checks. Large stocks
of birds were culled in the flu hit countries to stop the spread of the
disease that resulted in huge loss to livestock.