JOHOR BAHRU (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Malaysia should lift its export ban of chicken to Singapore before the local industry loses out, says the Johor Poultry Breeders Association here.
With the island republic's approval of Indonesia as its new source of frozen, chilled and processed chicken meat, Malaysia's poultry breeders would lose out significantly, said association secretary Lau Ka Leng.
"It's not too late if the government lifts the ban now, as the approval has just kicked in. But if we wait even a bit longer, chicken breeders will suffer the consequences.
"Once Singapore commits to having Indonesia as its source of chicken, it would take us a long time to be able to export chicken to the country again, even after the ban is lifted," he said.
In a Facebook post last Thursday (June 30), the Singapore Food Agency said Indonesia had been approved as the republic's new source of frozen, chilled and processed chicken meat. Singapore's existing sources include Brazil, Thailand and Australia.
In early June, Malaysia had imposed a ban on the export of chicken to Singapore until domestic prices and production stabilise.
Beginning July 1, the ceiling price for standard chicken in Peninsular Malaysia has been fixed at RM9.40 (S$2.98) per kilo.
But Mr Lau said that in the long run, Singapore would likely have Malaysia as its main source of chicken again.
"The price of chicken in Malaysia is still among the cheapest in South-east Asia and the birds we produce are larger in size. There is hope that Singapore will still get its chicken from us but this will take a long time to happen, years even," he said.