The The Department of Agriculture (DA), through the Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI), has emphasized the need to address the imbalance in the supply-demand ratio for chickens and eggs.
According to Undersecretary Christine Evangelista, the government has spoken with stakeholders and outlined the current challenges faced by the poultry sector.
She said that at a meeting with industry players on Monday, July 11, they discussed strategies to reduce the cost of production while still making it profitable to encourage stakeholders to continue production amid challenges in the sector.
BAI also mentioned during the discussions that it saw a relative decrease in the overall volume of production due to a combination of factors.
According to BAI Director Reildrin Morales, this is attributed to the openness of the market, and thus increased demand against the level of production oriented towards the shutdown scenario.
Data from the National Meat Inspection Service (NMIS) shows that 346 million head of poultry were slaughtered from January to June 2021 when the “lockdown” is implemented in different parts of the country compared to 2022 data for 349 million head of poultry slaughtered.
“Subject to further analysis of disposable household income, the slaughter data for 2021 that caters to 2022 where there was market opening, such as hotels, restaurants and other institutional buyers, shows a clear contrast with available supply,” Director Morales said.
Besides the surge in demand, BAI reports that some producers have halted production, believing that avian influenza (AI), systemic hepatitis B (IBH), and other diseases will keep markets closed.
“Other factors that have led to the disparity in supply and demand are the high cost of inputs such as feed ingredients and fuel, changing weather conditions and modification of the nutritional formula of companies that have led to stunted growth and long growth periods for poultry,” Morales said.
To meet these challenges, BAI and industry stakeholders recommended that a Life Cycle Model (LCM) be installed to ascertain the current supply.
Morales said that the current LCM for both laying hens and broilers may not reflect the actual situation as producer importers have made some “interventions” to the breeder stocks of both eggs and broilers due to artificial intelligence.
Intensive early reporting to farmers was also recommended, advocating for an increase in the compensation value and a shortening of the compensation process for affected birds.