The Nigerian poultry industry is at brink to collapse and could lose about N1 trillion (US$ 2.6 billion) annually, threatening at least 1 million jobs.

In June, Central Bank of Nigeria issued a directive banning the importation of maize, hinging its decision on the need “to increase local production, stimulate a rapid economic recovery, safeguard rural livelihoods and increase jobs,” However, the programme director of the Lagos Business School Agribusiness Programme, Ikechukwu Kelikume, stated that the policy could further compound the woes of poultry farmers given that maize is very scarce and, where available, very expensive. An appeal to Nigeria’s president was made by chairman of Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN), on behalf of numerous stakeholders in the industry.

“Several farms have already turned into early grave because of COVID -19 lockdown said by authorities, and others are on the verge of collapse. This is because of inaccessibility of maize, unaffordability of finished feed and the increasing maize price. It further compounded by a ban on importation of maize,”

Chicken fed comprised of 50%-70% maize in the country. There is also a high demand for maize for human consumption which has resulted in an unhealthy competition for this important staple food and feed.

PAN is calling on president to relax the ban on maize import till next planning season. There is a considerable layer volume in Nigeria and if these challenges left unaddressed will result in loss of more than a trillion Naira annually, said by Dr. Segun Makanjuola, a former general-secretary of PAN. Day Old Broiler prices has also spiked up, said chairman of Day Old Chicks Merchants Association of Nigeria.