Chicken Industry Report


In September, FairPlay’s Lionel Adendorf met with the Commissioner and Deputy Commissioner of South Africa’s National Consumer Commission. FairPlay continues to campaign for the need for a national, integrated food control agency. Earlier this year South Africa’s listeriosis outbreak claimed the lives of more than 200 people bringing the department of health under fire for lax food safety legislation.

From left to right: NCC Deputy
Commissioner, Ms Thezi Mabuza, FairPlay
Spokesperson Lionel Adendorf, NCC
Commissioner Mr Ebrahim Mohamed

FairPlay has consistently expressed concerns over the tardy review of local food safety legislation and its perceived laxity, and has said the department of health is failing to protect South African consumers.

In July FairPlay spokesperson Melinda Shaw said: “The outbreak of listeriosis highlighted the urgent need for packaging of all imported meat products to comply with the same regulations demanded of local products, which ensures full traceability and accountability.”

As FairPlay Founder, Francois Baird noted during the height of the outbreak “Instead of defending an underfunded and therefore inefficient testing regime, we should be fighting for greater safety for our consumers. We should be fighting for importers to be subject to the same rules as local producers.

Imported product can be sold here as potentially coming from nine countries on three continents, making traceability difficult, if not impossible. In addition to deficiencies in labelling requirements for imported product, there are very worrying health risks in thawing and repackaging of frozen bulk imports. Extreme vigilance is needed. South African consumer safety must come first! “

An essential step in protecting South African consumers is the establishment of a national food control authority.


In a recent report, EPAMonitoring highlights the incoherence between EU trade policy and EU development policy in the poultry sector.

EPA Monitoring is a web portal supported by the ACTAllianceEU, an NGO representing over 150 faith-based organizations in Europe. Their report notes that for policy coherence for development to be promoted in regard to EU agricultural subsidies and agricultural trade policies it should be up to individual developing country governments to determine the policy priorities with reference to which the effects of the CAP (the EU’s agricultural subsidy program) should be addressed.

“For its part, trade agreement commitments notwithstanding, the EU should allow developing country governments to take whatever trade measures they deem necessary to prevent the trade consequences of EU policies from undermining the scope for local agro-food sector development.”

According to EPAMonitoring the EU’s assertion that the dumping of chicken, into Africa enhances food security “ignores” the impact of patterns of EU exports of low cost residual poultry parts on local poultry production and local poultry feed supply chains.

The EU’s trumpeting of its abolition of export subsidies is simply a distraction intended to mask if not hide the real impact of massive EU agricultural subsidy programs and the disastrous consequences of EU trade policies in agro-food sector development in Africa and other developing regions.


IOL News reports that chicken came out as the clear favourite to be VAT-exempted for the support of South Africa’s poor, when stakeholders presented theirresponses to the Woolard Panel of Expert’s report in Parliament.

The overwhelming majority of organisations represented, which included FairPlay, Cosatu, the SA Poultry Association (Sapa), PWC, the Institute of Economic Justice and the SA Chamber of Banking called on MPs to vote for chicken to be added to the VAT-free basket.

FairPlay, which supports jobs and opposes dumping and predatory trade practices, has championed the cause of VAT-free chicken, and expressed its gratitude that the other stakeholders agreed today.

“We were heartened by the support, because we believe is it essential VAT should be removed on the chicken portions most consumed by low-income households,” said FairPlay spokesperson Lionel Adendorf.

The committee is considering stakeholder responses to the report of the Woolard panel, which recommended a number of additional items for inclusion on the list of goods that are exempt from VAT.

The panel could not reach a consensus on making chicken VAT-free, despite noting strong arguments in its favour, and has effectively left the decision to.


IOL reports that the move by President Cyril Ramaphosa to provide trade protection to the poultry sector and other industries as part of the government’s economic stimulus was welcomed by the FairPlay movement.

The FairPlay Movement which fights for jobs and against predatory trade practices, said these industries were worth investing in and were currently under financial pressure.

“Concerted government action against dumping and other predatory practices is what we have been fighting for all along and we are heartened at this recognition of the importance of the poultry industry as a strategic industry worth investing in,” said FairPlay founder Francois Baird.

“Dumped imports have plunged the chicken and sugar industries into crisis and have cost thousands of jobs,” said Baird.

“The only way to promote growth is by putting an end to dumping, which is at the tipping point of causing irreversible material damage to these industries,” Baird argued.

“That will only happen if there is trade protection and a range of other measures taken by the government.”

The SA Revenue Service (Sars) revealed that imports of chicken increased in the first half of 2018, outstripping the import volumes of the previous two years. “There is no better time for an urgent intervention” said Baird.

FairPlay had hoped that Ramaphosa’s statement would include more specific details about the plans for agriculture generally and the sugar industry specifically. Earlier this year President Ramaphosa publicly recognised that sugar is one of South Africa’s biggest
industries and includes large numbers of independent black farmers; and is one of the biggest employers in rural areas. It is crucial that its potential is protected”.

The overproduction of sugar in heavily subsidised countries such as Brazil has caused a constant glut of cheap sugar in the world, which has led to most of the other 120 sugar-producing countries raising tariff and other barriers to protect local industries and local jobs.

“We need to do the same in South Africa. This is a strategic industry which employs 85 000 people directly and 350 000 others indirectly. It would be irresponsible of government to fail at protecting it” according to Baird

These sentiments were echoed by FAWA General Secretary Katishi Masemola who said that Ramaphosa’s commitment to employ trade measures “within the World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules” is to be cautiously welcomed.

“The poultry and sugar sectors need meaningful steps to defend them without undue delay,” said Masemola.


The Randfontein Herald reports on a statement by Willie Bosoga, chairman of the SA Poultry Association (SAPA) egg board on the status of egg production in South Africa.

The large-scale importation of eggs puts South Africa’s local poultry production and local poultry feed supply chains at risk. South Africa is being flooded by egg imports from Brazil, the United States and the European Union. In June seven containers containing a total of over three million table eggs imported into South Africa from Brazil. In August South Africa’s Agency for Food Safety and Quality (AFSQ) issued a recall for five containers of imported table eggs due to labelling and classification problems.

Bosoga notes: “the importation of eggs is unnecessary. Eggs are sourced from places whose disease status is practically unknown to us, they are not inspected for physical or biological status, the countries from which they are sourced enjoy subsidies and export incentives at multiple levels in the production chain. Furthermore, the eggs are refrigerated at 2 degrees Celsius during their sea voyage, then repacked and distributed at ambient temperatures. This break in the cold chain in itself will cause deterioration.

Unnecessary imports of whatever commodity or product also inflate the already critical SA trade deficit.” “Ultimately, imported eggs mostly affect the informal market, where small scale farmers sell to this sector in South Africa. Most formal retailers have high food safety protocols in place with regular inspections at source of production and packing.

“South African egg producers pride themselves on producing top quality eggs, and consumers buying South African eggs can be assured of the freshness, safety, top quality and high nutritional value that our eggs have to offer. Buy South African, Local is Lekker, Proudly South African will always be our motto.

The FairPlay Movement is a not-for-profit trade movement that fights for jobs. Its goal is to end predatory trade practices between countries so that big and small nations play by the same rules. It supports the principle that penalties for transgressing those rules apply equally to everybody.

FairPlay was founded in October 2016. In alliance with existing organisations and experts it formulates and promotes strategies to defend communities made vulnerable by predatory trade practices and promote sustainable livelihoods.

These alliance partners are international, currently from the USA, Canada, UK, Ghana and South Africa.

FairPlay mission: To end the scourge of dumping as an immoral trade practice.

FairPlay vision: A world where dumping no longer exists, with free trade according to the rules.

Follow FairPlay Social Media on  @FairPlayZA

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