Big names pose threat in Assam, India

04-05-2007 | |

Over 1,000 poultry farmers from across Assam, India, recently met in Jorhat to discuss the threat posed by big names in the business that are making their footprint in the industry in the area.

The poultry business in Assam involves nearly 50,000 people. In a bid to safeguard their interests and protect their trade from being taken over, the farmers took part in the All Assam Poultry Farmers’ Protection Committee.
Poor profit margin
A.K. Bhagawati, president of the committee, said national and multinational companies opt for the integrated broiler production method. The firms enter into contracts with local farmers to supply poultry feed, chicks and other materials necessary to rear the birds. The companies then buy back the hens at a price determined by them. This leaves Rs 3 (€0.05) for the farmers – high profits for the companies, but a marginal profit for farmers.
“Here, the production cost goes up, but the market price of the bird does not fall, ensuring high profits for the companies. In south India and West Bengal, giant companies have taken over the industry with full control over price, while local farmers incur losses in the long run,” said Bhagawati.
Restrict contract farming
One of the resolutions adopted at the meeting was to urge the big firms not to begin contract farming in Assam. Next, the committee will urge the state government to intervene and ensure that the interests of the local farmers are safeguarded.