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Centre to release 5.3 lakh tonnes of rice, maize to poultry

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, Apr 20 (UNI) The Union Food, Consumers Affairs and Public Distribution Ministry has agreed to release 5.3 lakh tonnes of maize and broken rice to poultry farmers to help them bring the production level back to the normal.

Besides this, Agriculture and Food Minister Sharad Pawar has recommended implementation of 'Zoning' programme to facilitate movement of poultry products nationally and interantionally especially from the export targeted areas.

The Minister assured the delgation of the National Egg Coordination Committee (NECC) and State Poultry Associations that called on him today that "product promotion campaigns would be rigourously implemented with immediate effect through electronic media as well as print media to boost the consumer confidence in acceptability of eggs and chickens. With incidence of 'bird flu' (Avian Influenza) inflicting the poutry in Mahashtra and Gujarat areas two months ago, the Indian are wary of eating poultry products.

Mr Pawar also agreed to look into the poultry industry's demand for withdrawal of custom duty on amino acids and vitamins which constitute 60 per cent of the total feed cost for the poutry.

The Ministry, however, also agreed to extend financial benefits, permissible to the farming community as per RBA guidelines, to the poultry industry as well.

The poultry industry claimed to have suffered a loss of Rs 9000 crore because of the nosedived consumption of poultry products in the aftemath of dected of Avian Influenza incidence in the country.

Two days ago, the poultry industry leaders including those from the NECC met UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Poultry is the only industry in the agricultural segment which grows at 15 per cent and contributes more than Rs 35,000 crore to the Country's GNP.

As many as 15 millionb agricultural farmers depend on poultry for their livelihood.


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