Newcastle eradication in Colombia would cost US$250 million
Newcastle disease prevents Colombia from exporting chicken meat and eggs to other markets
Andrés Valencia, president of the National Federation of Poultry Producers of Colombia (Fenavi), told Caracol radio network that "the government has asked for a national plan to eradicate Newcastle disease. It is a plan that should be at least for 15 years. We have estimated the cost of the plan to execute the disease should be about US$250 million. We have asked the government to include the plan to eradicate Newcastle disease into the national development plan that is being discussed for the four-year period of 2014-2018, with the beginning of the new period of this re-elected government."
On the other hand, the Fenavi representative said that imports, especially from the United States, are between 35,000 and 40,000 metric tons. According to Valencia, that only accounts for 3 percent of domestic consumption, but he admits that this figure could change. "So far, the [free trade agreement] with the U.S. has not posed a threat to poultry producers in the country, but remember that this FTA is for life and market conditions are constantly evolving. Today, we can say that we are calm, but later we could not say the same. "
The spokesman added that the poultry industry expects to close with total sales in excess of COP8.5 billion (US$4,250 million). "With this, perhaps it is the largest agricultural sector in Colombia today. The evolution of prices has been favorable, especially for eggs. Egg prices have increased almost on par with inflation (projected at a 6 percent annual rate)." For the closing of 2014, chicken production in Colombia could register a growth of 4 percent with production at 1.3 million metric tons.