Home » Govt to import one million eggs daily facing repercussions of past blunders.

Govt to import one million eggs daily facing repercussions of past blunders.

By: Staff Writer Colombo (LNW): Sri Lanka is now getting ready to import one million eggs from India daily to meet the current massive shortage and reasonable ever rising price due to the downfall of the local industry started with the ban on agro-chemicals, an ill conceived policy of imprudent Gotabaya Rajapksa regime. The yields of maize, which is the main ingredient in poultry feeds, have decreased up to 40%, leading to a severe shortage of animal feed for poultry industry When markets were functioning, about 65 % of the maize for animal feed was produced in the country and the private sector imported the balance. Sri Lanka’s Consumer Affairs Authority banned the use of rice for animal feed in June 2022. Under this set up the new government headed by President Ranil Wickeremasinghe has decided to import eggs from India imposing a special commodity levy of Rs 1 (USD 0.003) per kg on imports of eggs by the Sri Lanka State Trading (General) Corporation. Prior to the special commodity levy, a customs duty of Rs. 110 (USD 0.30) per kg was applicable to these imports. All importers except the above trading company will be subject to a levy of Rs 50 per egg The Sri Lanka State Trading (General) Corporation says that steps have been taken at present to import one million eggs each day. Its chairman Asiri Valisundara says that eggs are imported in this manner based on market demand. He mentioned that currently 20 million eggs have been imported from India. Asiri Valisundara says that 10 million imported eggs have been released to the market. He adds that an imported egg will be released to bakeries, biscuit manufacturers, catering services and restaurants at a price of 35 rupees each. Due to the non-availability of poultry feeds and increased cost of production, about 40% of small to medium-scale egg producers have closed their farms during the last 2 years (2021-2022). It is reported that egg production has reduced by over 40%, which led to present crisis of shortages of eggs, creating a 36% deficit in egg consumption in 2021. Shortage of eggs, which is the cheapest protein source, has led to protein malnutrition, especially among children leading to loss of potential human capital in the future. It has been estimated that the level of consumption of eggs is reduced by around 40% owing to both non-availability of eggs, higher prices and also due to low purchasing power. It is important to emphasize that small- to medium-scale producers are vital contributors of the egg industry in the country, and a large number find their livelihood within the industry value chain.

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