Kandahar poultry farms witness significant growth
KANDAHAR CITY (Pajhwok): Poultry farms have seen significantly growth in southern Kandahar province in the recent years, with 500 million afghanis invested in the roaring business.
Currently, 470 poultry farms are operational in Kandahar, with 12 of them producing eggs and the rest providing chickens to meets 70 percent of the provincial demand.
However, poultry farms’ owners say that they can offer chicken meat to the entire southern region if their problems they faced with resolved by the government.
Agriculture Department official Eng. Mohammadullah Noori, in an exclusive interview with Pajhwok Afghan News, said poultry farms in Kandahar had significantly grown in the past few years.
Of the 470 farms across the province, 12 produced eggs and 458 supplied meat to the market. Six years ago, only 23 farms were active in Kandahar.
The farms involving an investment of more than 500 million afghanis are located in Kandahar City, Dand, Daman, Arghandab, Zherai, Panjwai, Takhta Pul and Spin Boldak districts.
These farms produce 100,000 eggs and 30,000 kilograms of meat on a daily basis, Noori said, adding the ranches -- containing up to 10,000 chickens -- met the need of 70 percent of Kandahar residents.
However, he informed 100 other farms had been closed in the province due to different problems. “We would not need imports from neighbouring countries if these farms are revived,” he believed.
Noori said there were no poultry diagnostic laboratories in Kandahar in the past and the drugs imported were of poor quality. Fortunately, a poultry laboratory was recently inaugurated by CARD-F in the city.
Two doctors, who have done masters at an Indian institute in diagnosing chicken and livestock diseases, are working at the laboratory -- operating at the southern zone level.
Poultry farm owners in Kandahar complain they are faced with problems. If the problems are resolved by the government, they hope they will be able to meet Kandahar’s need for poultry products.
Haji Nasrullah, head of the poultry farmers association, has invested a huge amount of money in the business and owned several farms. Lack of medical facilities, doctors, low-quality medicines and high duties are the major issues he has been facing.
He, however, explained the issue of medicine had been resolved with the establishment of the first-ever poultry laboratory in Kandahar. Most of the medicines are imported from Iran and Pakistan.
But the low-quality drugs caused more harm than benefit, he alleged, asking the government to resolve the issues being faced by the farmers to reduce Afghanistan’s dependence on imports from Pakistan and Iran.
Ahmadullah, another investor, said he had built farms, but problems hampered his business. He asked the agriculture ministry to stop imports of low-quality medicines from neighbouring countries.
He also suggested the promotion of domestic production of poultry feed. He lamented that eggs and chicken meat were being imported from Pakistan at a large scale despite the fact that domestic production could meet local needs.
Eng. Mohammadullah Noori, director of agriculture, acknowledged the farmers had been struggling with multiple problems that had been shared repeatedly with the ministry concerned.
About poultry feed, he said eight factories functioned in the past but their number had fallen to only two. Their production is not enough to meet the need of existing poultry farms in the province. He said some factories stopped production due to power shortages.
Zabihullah, a resident of Aino Mena area, said the chickens imported from Pakistan were neither fresh nor tasty. Domestic eggs and chickens were of higher quality, he claimed, asking the government to provide facilities for domestic poultry production.
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