Poultry Farmers Cry for Govt Support
The Poultry Farmers Association of Liberia has called on the Government of Liberia through the Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) for more support to the sector.
According to the administrator Joseph Kodah, developing the poultry sector would be a quick win as it will contribute to food and nutritional security thus creating employment for the youths and women in Liberia.
Giving the overview and objective of POFAL Thursday, October 27, 2022, in Monrovia, Kodah said the Poultry Farmers Association of Liberia is the only sector in Liberia that is yet to receive any assistance from the government to address its challenges.
POFAL administrator noted that Liberia is importing about 47 thousand tons of poultry meat worth US$35.9 million per year and up to 7.7 thousand tons of eggs worth US$9.l million per year making the total imports from poultry products about US$45 million a year.
He revealed that Liberia is largely dependent on the importation of poultry meat and eggs from Europe and Brazil.
“This time, 87 percent of the chicken meat and over 98.5 percent of the egg consumed in Liberia is met from imports,” he disclosed.
Kodah indicated that currently, the poultry sector of Liberia is at an infant stage of development; saying that the local production is so small and cannot meet the demand of the growing population.
The administrator of POFAL lamented that the development of the poultry industry in Liberia has gone through two distinct phases, naming: increasing production from the 1960s through the early nineties (before the war broke out) where the local demand was largely met by local production; and a remarkable decrease in production during the war which continued up to the present day followed by a sharp increase in the importation of poultry products.
Kodah established that eggs are also high in lutein which lowers the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration, particularly among people living in developing countries.
For her part, Mariatou Njie, FAO Representative in Liberia said she strongly believes that the anniversary is not an ordinary event, but a golden opportunity to take stock and reflect on challenges and progress made and constructively engage for bigger results.
Madam Njie revealed that the celebration is particularly important for transforming and sustaining the development of a vibrant poultry sector in Liberia.
She explained that though largely undeveloped, the poultry sub-sector has huge potential for wealth creation and employment opportunities in Liberia.
“Beyond this, it holds huge potential to address the domestic demand and significantly towards achieving food and nutrition security and livelihoods of many Liberians,” Madam Njie said.
The FAO Representative in Liberia said, similar to the situation in other least-developed countries, the Liberia poultry Sub-sector remains largely dependent on traditional production systems, which are based on indigenous breeds.
She disclosed that over the past years, FAO has developed a growing interest in the sector, especially among youth, women, and rural smallholder rural households.
“In 2021, FAO (ECTAD), with support from USAID and in collaboration with the MOA, assessed the sector and led the development of a strategy to enhance self-sufficiency in poultry products (eggs and meat),” she revealed.