LAHORE - The Pakistan Poultry Association has lamented that the industry continued to suffer power breakdowns of up to 10 hours despite the fact that electricity shortfall has shrunk to less than 2,000MW in the country.

“The independent feeders linked to industrial units are still facing long power cuts of 10 hours though the generation level has increased sharply,” observed the PPA former central chairman and spokesperson Abdul Basit.

He stressed the need for well-tailored and well thought-out measures to not only generate but also distribute and manage electricity in the country in order to overcome ongoing energy crisis.

He said that the industry has been running from pillar to post in search of uninterrupted energy supply for the last five years to keep their operations intact and workers employed. At present, the poultry industry is facing 10 hours a day electricity loadshedding on independent feeders.

The Chairman of Big Bird Group of companies claimed that smooth and non-stop electricity supply to farmhouses can reduce chicken prices, as crippling long-hour power loadshedding coupled with humid weather have hit poultry industry hard, thus increasing its cost three times.

He said that due to three times hike in cost of production along with unmanageable cooling system at controlled sheds in July-Sept, which may perish even the whole poultry stock, almost 30 per cent of farmers have shut their businesses temporarily. This also causes a sharp reduction in poultry stocks, lifting their rates automatically. Strongly protesting against severe power breakdowns of 10 hours, poultry industry stakeholder said poultry sector has to install two types of heavy generators, one operates in the absence of electricity while other standby generator that runs when first one is failed due to sizzling climate. Owing to prolonged power breakdowns, generators also failed to operate and run at maximum 60 per cent of their capacity, costing as high as Rs40 per unit, he claimed.

“The industry was highly optimistic with the success of the PML-N in May 11 elections, as there was a general consensus that the PML-N leadership would easily understand the situation because of its industrial background. And the new government, by clearing circular debt, has tried to reduce power shortfall, which has dropped to less than 2,000MW from 5,000MW in previous regime. But the water and power ministry is not handling the situation wisely.