With the hurdle on the imports of frozen chicken legs being cleared, poultry industry fears that the domestic business could be hit by 25%.
Although the dressed chicken market in India is 3-5% of the total poultry market, the impact could be to the tune of 20-25%, Vasant Kumar Shetty, convener, All India Broiler Coordination Committee, said. Around 50 lakh people are dependent on the poultry sector, he said. This apart, maize and soybean growers are also likely to get affected since almost 40% of maize and soybean is used as feed by the industry, he said. “There is no level playing field as the production cost of the US poultry industry is much lower because of genetically modified (GM) maize and soybean while in India, we are only permitted non-GM maize and soybean.”
The entry of the imported chicken legs could lead to lower realizations for Indian poultry farmers and prices could drop by 2-5% per kg, he said.
Shetty said that while the government was allowing import of US chicken legs, it was not promoting the export of boneless chicken from India which has a high demand in the US. The US poultry industry could start exporting to India soon.