Drop in chicken prices at the farm gate in Mar compared to Jan. The slump in prices is due to speculation fanned by social media that chickens could spread the coronavirus. The precipitous fall in prices forced farmers to cull large numbers resulting in huge losses according to Suresh Chitturi, vice chairman and managing director of Srinivasa Farms Pvt. Prices have since recovered to just above production costs, but the poultry industry is still reeling from the shock as banks will not lend them money for operations.
Rs. 20,000 crore
Assistance sought by the poultry industry in the form of loans from banks to help them tide over the situation. Not only is the funding necessary for running every day operations, there is the additional risk of default on existing loans totaling as much as Rs. 25,000 crore.
Drop in poultry feed sales from Jan levels following a drop in the number of birds on the farms on concern that demand for chicken meat from the food services industry won’t revive soon - Jaison John, a general manager at Suguna Foods Pvt., a top poultry producer in India.
People directly or indirectly employed by the industry will be impacted as will be the over 25 million producers. The size of the Indian poultry industry is close to $14 billion With an annual output of 95 billion eggs, India ranks second in the world, according to Chitturi.