Barbadians have been told to expect a significant reduction in the cost of poultry products over the next two months. According to industry stakeholders, prices could be slashed by up to 30 per cent.
This comes in light of action taken by the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security to temporarily halt the sale of these products by the Barbados Agricultural Development and Marketing Corporation (BADMC), as a means of addressing the glut in the industry.
Speaking during a press conference on plans to safeguard the poultry industry during the COVID-19 crisis, at his Ministry yesterday, Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Indar Weir, said the cost of the commodity was one of the topics raised during discussions with the stakeholders, and they had agreed to offer consumer specials, as part of efforts to remove excess poultry and prevent wastage.
“Each individual producer would run their own specials, but Barbadians should expect to see a reduction in the poultry price over this measuring period,” he stated.
Minister Weir also announced that a public relations campaign would be rolled out to “sensitize the public to the availability of Barbadian poultry.”
“We will also bring a sensitization drive to Barbadians to help them understand that eating clean, healthy poultry during COVID-19 is better for you because you want to have a strong immune system,” Minister Weir added.
Reiterating that this aspect would also be evaluated, the Agriculture Minister said he hoped it would result in a “win-win situation” for all involved.
The public relations campaign would be spearheaded by the Barbados Agricultural Society (BAS), the organization under which the Barbados Egg and Poultry Producers Association falls.
Chief Executive Officer, James Paul, said they would be utilizing traditional and social media to encourage Barbadians to purchase and consume more local produce.
“At a time when Barbadians are stressed and are looking for a way to economize, the industry is there with them to ensuring they can get quality, local [produce] at an affordable cost at this time.”
Mr. Paul added: “A lot of members have dropped their prices. In the area of where we have free market competition, some would’ve dropped more than others, but what we want to ensure is that all players in the industry participate.”
The public relations campaign is expected to be launched this week.