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Poultry farmers happy as smugglers retreat

Update: August, 25/2012 - 09:52

HA NOI — Cheap, low-quality, smuggled poultry from China has been cleared from Ha Noi markets, enabling chicken farmers to make a profit for the first time in months.

However, the farmers and animal health officials said much more needed to be done to put an end to the smuggling industry.

Duong Xuan Tinh, deputy head of Thuong Tin District's Animal Health Station, said there was no low-quality smuggled chicken at Ha Vy Market, the main poultry provider for the capital.

He said this followed a request from the Prime Minister on July 31. Authorities have now put stricter checks on poultry at border gates.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, stopping the smugglers has benefited domestic breeders.

Nguyen Van Chien, a small trader, said when smuggled chicken was everywhere, domestic chicken prices were seriously devalued, causing farmers to suffer great losses.

But now, he said, prices were up by 20-30 per cent. However, deputy director of the municipal Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Huy Dang said that controlling poultry smugglers was still difficult.

The northern mountainous province of Lang Son, where most of the poultry enters illegally from China, had too many pathways. this made it difficult for border officials to control smugglers.

"Instead of fining porters or drivers hired to transport smuggled chicken, the authorities should fine the wholesalers in Viet Nam selling the meat," said Dang.

Meanwhile, Tinh said that culling live birds smuggled from China was a big problem.

He said Thuong Tin Animal Health Station once had to put down 3.1 tonnes of smuggled chickens, but no commune in Thuong Tin District agreed to provide land for the job as they were afraid of an epidemic. — VNS

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