Poultry industry in for a rough ride

South African poultry producers, and small-scale farmers in particular, are likely to have a tough time in 2022, according to Marthinus Stander, head of the poultry division at RCL Foods.

Rising costs of feed, fertilizer and most recently fuel mean that inputs costs are at record highs, while consumers’ disposable income is under pressure. This is compounded by poor delivery of services such as water and electricity.

Smaller farmers would definitely find it difficult to farm sustainably due to soaring input costs, while larger producers would aim to survive and maintain their volumes, Stander said. He did not expect much growth in broiler production in 2022.

“Meat prices must increase in order to cover the surge in input costs. However, supply and demand will ultimately determine price.”

Things are looking a little better in the egg industry, according to Dr Abongile Balarane, head of SAPA’s Egg Organisation.

He told Farmers Weekly that the egg industry had contained the spread of avian influenza much better than it had in the 2017 outbreak. It was now looking to expand local consumption as well as egg exports.