Meanwhile Poultry farmers are unhappy as the egg prices have come down
According to the 2021 Livestock Census of Bhutan by National Statistic Bureau, egg production saw a 21% drop in 2021 with total egg production at 133 million eggs.
Egg production and the poultry population have generally seen an upward trend since 2007 till now.
Sarpang had the largest egg output across dzongkhags, at 29.1 % , followed by Tsirang with 20.3% and Samtse with 6.9%.
The census also reveals that the majority of other livestock deaths were in the poultry category with 891,326 birds dead. Of the total poultry death, five dzongkhags reported the highest deaths in the country: Sarpang (26.4 %), Samtse (23.1 %), Tsirang (14.3 %), Chhukha (12.9 %) and Dagana (12.7 %).
Meanwhile, the majority of poultry farmers are dissatisfied with the drop in egg prices.
They claim that feed prices are too expensive and that they are unable to recoup their feed costs.
They said that the price had been thrown off by the import of eggs a few months ago.
According to a poultry owner in Dawakha, Tshering said egg prices have dropped, making it impossible to even recover the money spent on feed.
“We are losing money since local eggs are practically the same price as imported eggs. People who bought imported eggs in bulk are now selling them for Nu 200 to Nu 230 per tray. People are unwilling to buy at our pricing, thus I’m selling at Nu 250,” he said.
He said, “I’m dismayed by the current market pricing. Taking loans to start the business was challenging at first, and now purchasing feeds with the money we have is much more difficult. I am planning to close the business.”
Another poultry farmer in Samtse Gurung stated that the farmers are discouraged from continuing to operate their business due to the low return.
“A bag of feed costs roughly Nu 2000, and we have to sell a cartoon of eggs for Nu 1,700, which is too low, and we have no choice but to sell at this price because our eggs will rot if we hold them for longer,” he said.
A shopkeeper near the CFM market said she had bought a large quantity of imported eggs but was unable to sell them when the local egg production regained.
“When imports were authorized, I bought a lot of eggs, but now that local eggs are coming, I can’t sell the imported eggs. I’ve also heard that some shopkeepers blend imported and local eggs and market them as a local product,” she added.
A tray of egg in CFM is currently Nu 200 for old eggs and Nu 230 for fresh eggs.