‘Measures need to be accelerated to curb chicken shortages’

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The Association of Meat Importers and Exporters (AMIE) says emergency measures need to be accelerated to curb chicken shortages and price increases ahead of the festive season in December.

Following the recent outbreaks of bird flu in the country, Trade, Industry, and Competition Minister Ebrahim Patel created a temporary rebate on imported chicken products, giving the industry two weeks to make submissions.

However, Paul Matthew, CEO of AMIE, says two weeks is not enough, and consumers are warned that escalated poultry prices are inevitable.

Matthew says without doubt that December will be a bleak month for SA’s ailing poultry industry.

“We are in a serious crisis; obviously, in a country with local producers, it’s the worst we’ve ever experienced. Patel said it was a crisis situation, and therefore he asked Itech to investigate the possibility of a rebate to allow imports to come in at a much better price to ensure that we will have poultry for the festive season. However, the wheels below are moving very slowly. So, I think the consumers in SA are going to have a shortage of poultry over the festive season.”

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