By Kehinde Oluwatayo
A livestock farmer in Akure, Mr Andrew Adebayo has called on governments in the South West region of the country, to come to the rescue of poultry business as it is gradually going into extinction.
Mr Adebayo, who is a retired civil servant in an interview with The Hope, attributed the fading out of the business to high cost of feed materials like maize and soya beans among others.
According to him, the price of one tonne of maize which was sold for between N59,000 and N60,000, now sells for N145,000 ditto Soya beans and JNC, adding that over N160,000 is required to formulate one tonne of feed for layers.
Another thing he said, contributed to the challenges being faced by poultry farmers is the ban on some drugs being used to treat the birds, noting that “we understand that NAFDAC is doing something, but we have not seen anything”.
Adebayo also said poultry farmers now have problem with day old chicks, because parent stock are not readily available, while some even die at a tender age, adding that the integrity of parent stock cannot be ascertained.
While lamenting that poultry farmers in the South West region of the country feel the heat more than other regions because it contributes little to the development of agriculture, Adebayo said other regions are not left out completely.
The farmer, who said he has been in the business of agriculture since 1964, pointed out that South West has the background for agriculture and should not be at the back seat in Agric development.
His words, “farmers in those days were being encouraged. They were being given money, trained among others.
“There were farm settlements everywhere. Why should the farm settlement die or are we saying we do not have background for agriculture?
Governments in South West should rise up and show total commitment to the development. We feel the heat more now, because we contribute little to the development of agriculture. “Imagine, there is no single irrigation facility in South West. And if anything is done by the Federal Government, it will not get to us. By now we should have our parent stock, but we still import from outside the country,” he decried.
While calling on Federal Government to develop agriculture in the country, Adebayo said no research institute or university in Nigeria is developing parent stock.
He said there should be alternative drugs to the ones banned by the Federal Government.