Visayas regions ‘not experiencing’ chicken shortage

·2 min read

THE chicken supply in the Visayas is enough to meet the demands of millions of consumers in the three regions, Department of Agriculture (DA) Assistant Secretary Salvador Diputado said on Monday, September 12, 2020.

Diputado is in charge of implementing the DA’s programs in Central, Eastern and Western Visayas.

“There is no shortage of supply. So far, no one has complained and called for the importation of poultry products. However, the price fluctuates. Sometimes it goes up, sometimes it goes down,” he said in Cebuano.

Diputado issued the statement after Gregorio San Diego Jr., chairman of the United Broiler Raisers’ Association and the Philippine Egg Board Association, expressed alarm over the sudden drop in chicken prices in the past weekends.

On Saturday, September 10, and on Sunday, September 11, alone, the price of chicken dropped P10 per kilo, prompting the national group of poultry raisers to call on the national government, particularly the agriculture department, to “recalibrate” the importation of chicken, which it said is competing with local supply.

“Yung importasyon a little lower sa kailangan para ma-incentivize ang local production (Importation should be reduced a little to incentivize local production),” San Diego said.

Diputado refused to comment on San Diego’s statement, saying the importation is approved by national officers at the DA and depends on the needs of consumers.

But he said Cebu has enough supply of chicken, adding that local government officials are aware that Governor Gwendolyn Garcia signed an executive order that banned the entry of poultry products and byproducts from areas with confirmed cases of bird flu.

Diputado also said they have focal persons who are destined in the field in the three Visayas regions to monitor prices.

A sudden increase in chicken prices will immediately set alarm bells, he said.

Meanwhile, the agriculture official said there are people who prefer to buy imported chicken, especially if this is what they have been using in their business. (PAC/PJB)