Small-scale poultry farmers in the Indian state of Goa are receiving cash and equipment to supplement their abilities to raise birds and produce eggs under a new government plan.
A farmer rearing a minimum of 100 birds will be entitled to a cash subsidy of Rs 1,500 (US$33.83) and a cage unit worth Rs 12,000 (US$270.64). The cage will hold 100 birds and will include an egg catcher, manual feeders and waterers.
The goal, according to the government, is to enable farmers to gain supplementary income and a nutritive diet without acquiring additional labor. "In the last five years, Goa has witnessed a drastic reduction in the number of poultry farms and 90% of local small scale poultry farmers were compelled to close down," says the plan. "The government is, therefore, offering encouragement in the form of cash subsidy to boost and supplement agricultural income of the farmers."
The government hopes to help offset some of the costs small farmers might not otherwise be able to absorb. "In recent times, Goa's small-scale poultry farmers could not sustain the competition from poultry farmers of neighboring states that sell poultry products at lower rates," says the plan. "Goa's poultry farmers face high input costs of poultry feed and labor, which are major shares in production costs in comparison to neighboring states."