The USA Poultry & Egg Export Council's International Poultry Development Program has pledged $25,000 to the Japanese Chicken Association to aid and assist its members in rebuilding efforts after the recent devastating earthquake and tsunami.

“The Japanese poultry industry has been hard hit by the disaster, and this is our industry’s way of reaching out to them,” said Eric Joiner, chairman of the UIPDP and a founder of AJC International, an Atlanta trading company and poultry exporter. “The UIPDP board believes this is a worthwhile project that will be truly appreciated by a segment of the Japanese industry that affected.” He said the contribution would also be used to assist employees of the companies affected by the disaster.

USAPEEC President Jim Sumner, who also serves as president of the UIPDP, said that the funds could help the Japanese industry in areas of greatest need. “It’s great that we have an organization like the UIPDP to support the USAPEEC’s goals and initiatives,” he said. “We believe that going directly to the Japanese Chicken Association will ensure that the funds will be put to good use.”

Sumner said that the USAPEEC would also serve as the focal point for collecting direct financial contributions from private companies, especially its member companies, which may be interested in providing support to the Japanese industry.