Poultry farmers in Delta have urged the state government to support them with interest -free loans, to enable them expand their business. The farmers told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Asaba that support from the state and local governments, would lead to expansion and growth of poultry farming in the state.

Mrs Vivian Edijana, a poultry farmer in Asaba said: “Poultry business is lucrative when the farm is large and for us to really do well in the business there is need for government to support us with interest- free loans. “Providing soft loans will not only help to boost our business, but also help to attract more people, especially youths, to venture into agriculture.’’

Another poultry farmer based in Okpanam, near Asaba, Mr James Anazia, said that he had been selling about 1, 000 birds every December in the past 10 years. “With my experience in the business, if there is support from the government, I will produce more birds and egg,’’ he said.

Also speaking, Mr Isaac Anigboro, said that poultry business had prospects and challenges, especially with regards funding and good knowledge of the business. Anigboro identify funding as one of the challenges facing those in the business, stressing that with enough capital, the farmers the farmers could producemore birds and eggs in the state.

Mrs Cynthia Okolie, another poultry farmer in Asaba, said that the increasing cost of poultry feeds, was another major challenge facing the farmers. “The feeds we were buying at the cost of between N1800 and N2, 600 in 2013, has increased to between N1, 900 and N2, 800. “It takes between three to five months for our birds to mature and feeding these birds is always very expensive. “I will want to use this opportunity to appeal to the government for more support to enable us expand our farms. This will also discourage the importation of frozen chicken to the country,’’ Okolie said.

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