Unfair practices in Zimbabwe’s day-old-chick market
The Zimbabwean government has launched an investigation into reports that some day-old chick suppliers are violating competition laws. It has emerged that some suppliers are apparently taking advantage of the erratic availability of day-old chicks by making the sale of the chicks conditional on producers buying a set number of bags of stockfeed. According to the Competition and Tariff Commission (CTC), this is in violation of the law.
Zimbabwe Poultry Farmers’ Association chairperson George Nare said this practice had been prevalent for some time, but had intensified in recent months due to the unreliable supply of day-old chicks and rising prices of poultry feed.
Zimbabwe’s day-old chicks market is dominated by about six large companies that also manufacture poultry feed. Farmers complained that the producers were taking advantage of their position to derive undue commercial gain.
“I wanted to buy 4 000 chicks, but was told that the transaction would proceed only if I bought the broiler starter feed from them,” a farmer near Bulawayo, Dumiso Nkomazana, said. – Thulani Mpofu