Thimphu Retailers volunteer to make egg affordable to consumer
The annual egg production in the country increased from 22 million eggs in 2010 to 57 million eggs in 2012 making the country egg self-sufficient in Bhutan. Yet the egg price in the country has not gone down from Nu.300/tray in most of the big towns in the country. The President and the Founder of Youth Business Cooperative says “the egg price can be brought down without compromising the profit margin for the farmers” He told us that the profit margin kept by the people till egg reaches from a producer to end consumer must be made reasonable.
If initiatives are not taken immediately, local egg will become very expensive and soon we might have to import eggs from India. These consequences will lead to closure of about 2100 poultry farms across the country and lead to millions of INR outflow from the country.
We found out that egg can be cheaper to import, but egg is also the only commodity which Bhutan is proud about its self-sufficiency. Many feel that we must support domestic production to be self reliant.
Youth Business Cooperative (YBC) is working on bringing down the egg price to enhance egg production by providing continuous income to farmers and reasonable egg price for general consumer.
At a meeting between YBC and Sarpang Layer Cooperative held recently in Sarpang, the egg producers and YBC decided to bring down the egg price to help everyone in the egg value chain benefit egg production and marketing system.
Eggs will once again become affordable with the YBC bringing down the price of egg after the signing of agreement with the retailers who will sell eggs at a controlled price.
“YBC chairman Yeshey said, unless the cost of egg is brought down, most of the consumers, especially the low income consumers, might have to worry of not getting eggs, and this is what YBC will not let happen”.
Shops in Thimphu charge about 300 per tray, which has now come down to Nu 260/ tray with YBC intervention. The YBC General Manager Rinzin Norbu, says that egg is an essential food commodity and therefore equal distribution will be made for every consumer by providing maximum limit of eggs for each family.” He said that “The problem is not the non availability of egg but it is the people who buy in bulk at lower price from YBC and sells at very high price to consumers.”
The YBC has plans to help poultry farmers by supplying egg trays and egg cartoons at cheaper price to bring down the egg price.
Voluntary Egg Retailers of Thimphu on October ---- signed an agreement with YBC to sell eggs at affordable price fixed by YBC to help general consumer. It was found out that any shop can become a YBC egg retailer but should agree on the price.
The Project Manager Kinley Phurba said “to ensure continuity of egg supply and bring affordable price to consumer, YBC is planning to setup two commercial layer farms with 10,000 birds capacity under BOIC fund support”
The Chairman of YBC say “The Hon’ble Minister Ministry of Agriculture and Forests has shown keen interest in streamlining the egg marketing to bring down the cost” we are receiving support from Department of Livestock, BAFRA and DAMC under MoAF for this activity.