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Imports killing poultry industry in South Africa

  • 21 Feb, 2019
  • South Africa

Durban - Increased chicken imports from overseas are hitting the local poultry industry hard. In a statement, the South African Poultry Association said there were 538 434 tonnes of chicken imported.

Izaak Breitenbach, General manager of the Broiler division of SAPA said there was a dip in imports due to avian flu in Europe, but the shortfall was picked up by Brazil.

“A table produced by SAPA shows that total frozen broiler imports rose from 368 201 tons in 2015 to 538 434 tons in 2018. The value of all poultry imports in 2018, including MDM, is R6 billion. Frozen chicken portions – the imports including the popular bone-in portions that have harmed local producers and killed South African jobs – went up from 221 218 tons in 2014 to 383 297 tons last year,” Breitenbach said.

He said the increase in imported chickens was getting worse and would result in job losses. Breitenbach said, the imports demonstrated that there was a need for government to step in to help the industry. “We are an efficient industry, but we cannot compete against imports dumped below the cost of production, or from countries with a long history of agricultural subsidies,” he said.

The Daily News has previously reported that local chicken industry was hit hard by imports with Rainbow chickens having to close many of its farms which resulted in thousands of people losing their jobs


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