By Felix Andrew
TANZANIA’s poultry stakeholders have outlined reasons which deter development of the industry and asked government to work on them, hence increase its contribution to the economy.
Speaking to the Azania Post, Chairman of Tanzania Poultry Keepers Association, Mahamoud Tarimo, named factors which retard back the sector as high capital investment, unorganized market and unreliable supply of day old chicks.
Other reasons are lack of reliable supply of quality poultry feeds, high veterinary and poultry feed costs and lack of poultry processing industries.
He said in order to address those challenges, they decided to establish the organization which will recommend and come up with solutions.
It is intended, therefore to establish and register a strong association to cater for the need of poultry breeders who desire to address the challenges in poultry production and capture the huge potential both local and foreign.
He asked the government to assist them and make sure that they conduct their business at low costs.
He said to date the poultry sub-sector is mainly divided into a traditional and commercial production system. Traditional poultry kept are mainly chicken (90%) with the remaining small proportion being ducks, ostriches, pigeons and geese.
Traditional chicken shows a high potential to improve food security, household income of rural people – particularly disadvantaged groups such as women and children.
Despite traditional chicken being dominant it is still characterised by low production coefficients that are, high chick mortality, low annual egg production, low chick turnover and low annual off take.
According to him low production in traditional chicken is attributed to low genetic potential of indigenous ecotype chicken in terms of growth rate and egg production, poor husbandry practices in terms of low and poor quality nutrition, lack of disease control measures, poor or unavailability of houses and lack of bio-security measures and lack of commercial orientation.
Due to various challenges, some local poultry dealers have announced to quit the business.
In March this year the Kibo poultry firm based in Kilimanjaro said it has incurred a loss of shillings 37million in the first six month that ended on March 31 this year.
The firm’s Board was quoted as saying the Moshi-based Kibo Poultry – one of the oldest chicken broiler farms in the region – has continued to perform poorly resulting in the decision to exit the business in due course.
“In Tanzania, the economy is extremely challenging given current government reforms. We maintain strong market share in our three-wheeler business.
"We have made good progress in growing our two-wheeler business and continue to invest in this. Our other businesses have remained stable.
"Margins remain low and we expect these challenging times to continue in the second half of the year,” the firm indicated.