BARBADOS - A Barbados poultry organisation has reassured residents that measures are being taken to protect the country from the effects of avian flu, after restrictions placed on imports led to a shortage of eggs late last year.
President of the Barbados Egg and Poultry Producers Association Carlyle Brathwaite told Barbados TODAY that residents should not be worried about the avian flu virus getting there because preventative measures were being taken.
And he gave the assurance that should the virus spread and Barbados is no longer able to get its egg and poultry products from the US, the country would source the products elsewhere, so there should be no repeat of the egg shortage.
“We are keeping a very close eye. We are going to be testing our birds here from July,” said Mr Brathwaite.
Earlier this month, Barbados lifted its ban on the importation of poultry products from some countries, but said restrictions remained in place for the United States and Canada.
With Barbadians currently using more than 100,000 eggs per day, Mr Brathwaite said that in addition to the 124,000 layers that were on the island, another 82,000 were expected over the next two months.
Mr Brathwaite told Barbados TODAY he was pleased that the egg shortage situation “is now panning out and we should have a lot more eggs on the market from July onward.”
“The increased supply of brown eggs will continue to be available from this month and from next month we should have full access to brown eggs again,” reported Mr Brathwaite.
He said that part of the problem was that officials in the industry did not expect the boom in the tourism industry last year, which led to an increase in demand for poultry products and contributed to the recent egg shortage.
“Then we had ships, which we never had to cater for in the past, that came in and made the demand even greater and we didn’t want to lose them. So we had to service them.
“We are now preparing for that and will have every year between 180,000 to 200,000 layers, so that we would not have that shortage problem any longer,” he said.
ThePoultrySite News Desk