A poultry expert, Professor Owolabi Saka Lamidi, has said the nation will witness severe shortage of pullets in the future if the home bred Shika Brown continues to be neglected.
This comes amidst reports of apparent looming scarcity of layer pullets (egg-laying chicks) in the country, which will also translate into egg scarcity.
Professor Lamidi, who is a Director of Extension and Linkages at the National Animal Production Research Institute (NAPRI), Zaria, told Daily Trust that actors in the poultry industry have neglected the Shika Brown parent stock developed by the institute.
This, according to him, will make available the high quality parent stock for farmers to have pullets all over the country.
“All we want is to get the private sector that can invest in the multiplication of this parent stock, but they are more concerned with importation because of forex,” he said.
Some poultry farmers and stakeholder told Daily Trust that getting layer pullets at the moment takes months, raising fear that scarcity of layers and eggs is imminent.
Architect Kabiru Ibrahim is the President of the All Farmers’ Association of Nigeria (AFAN) and president of the Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN) in 2008.
The poultry farmer said in Nigeria today, there is a serious shortage of grandparent stock because the country did not restock in last eight years.
“When I was the president of the Poultry Association of Nigeria in 2008, we were given licenses to import those things in one month and in the same month, the approvals were withdrawn and since then, we have not had any license for people to bring grandparent stock. So what we have is a very old generation of grandparent stock – some non-existent now,” the AFAN president stated.
Although Architect Kabiru noted that some people were doing artificial insemination in the country, he stressed “that there is a serious gap of hatchable eggs in the country since we are not allowed to import chicken from abroad because we are not yet Avian Influenza certified free. So there is a problem in that sector, and the sooner it is addressed the better for the nation.”
He also expressed worry that few people have monopoly of chicks. “You have to wait for four to five months to get the order because we simply do not have hatchable eggs,” he said.
Daily Trust puts a call through to Amo Farm Sieberer Hatchery Limited in Oyo State to find out about the availability of pullets, a staff who sought anonymity said anybody that wanted to get pullets now would have to wait till the second week of January, which is about six months away and the price is now N240 per pullet.
However, the situation is different with black pullets as Zartech, one of the producers of pullets in Jos branch might not take that long to supply at N250 per pullet.