ZAMBIA - Poultry farmers in some areas of Zambia have resorted to the use of charcoal to mitigate the impact of load shedding.
Charcoal has become the alternative source of energy to warm poultry because of the consistent load shedding, reported Zambia Daily Mail.
Load shedding is when electricity supplies to some consumers are interrupted as there is not enough power production to meet demand.
Chairperson Dennis Ng’andwe said the impact of load shedding in the Mansa district has escalated, hence those who rear broiler chicken have adopted charcoal as an alternative.
He said that business has become difficult because the cost of running a poultry farm has gone up.
Mr Ng’andwe said the price of charcoal has also been hiked after traders noticed that the demand, especially from those in chicken rearing business, was high.
He said a 50 kilogramme bag of charcoal is now selling at 35 Zambian kwacha (K), up from K25.
“Almost all our members are now saying that chicken business is very expensive. We have to spend on feed, vaccine, charcoal, maize bran and other costs to ensure that we stay afloat,” he said.
He said feed is sold at K205 per 50 kilogramme bag and nine bags are needed to feed 100 chicks before they are ready.
Mr Ng’andwe stressed that poultry farmers are struggling to stay in business because of the rising cost of production.ThePoultrySite News Desk