The interim committee tasked with the revival of the Swaziland Poultry Association (SPA) has been directed to involve all players in the poultry industry, including egg producers and indigenous poultry farmers.
This transpired at a progress meeting held at Happy Valley Hotel in March 2017. Poultry industry stakeholders felt that it was not appropriate for the Association to comprise only broiler producers. Interim Committee member, Jeremy Boyde, had announced that the Association was being revived to primarily serve the interests of broiler producers, and that other sub-sectors were at liberty to set-up their own associations.
Among those opposed to the broilers only association were Joggie van Styp, Managing Director at Cranefeeds/Farm Services and Roy Fanourakis, Managing Director at Ngwane Poultry and a former Minister of Agriculture who is also a farmer specializing in poultry, beef and goat production. The meeting suggested that egg producers should be invited to the elections of the association’s committee planned for 9 May 2017.
The Swaziland commercial poultry sector is valued at over E200 million and the country long closed the borders for the importation of broilers and eggs. However, there is still a shortage in turkey and processed meat. The value of these imports exceeds E10 million.
The Swaziland Poultry Association is said to have existed in the early 2000 but never functioned properly. In 2015, Minister of Agriculture, Moses Vilakati, launched the revival of the Association by appointing an interim committee tasked with setting up another association. In the past two years, the interim committee has developed a constitution to guide the operations of the poultry group.
In terms of the guidelines, committee members are expected to serve for two years. The committee will comprise a chairperson, vice chairperson, a secretary, a treasurer, a member of the small grower sub-committee, a representative of allied industries and a government representative.
Membership shall be a person, company or organization that derives the greater part of their income from broiler production, hatchery, abattoir, feed and parastatal organisations. Membership fees are E250 per year for individual farmers, E5,000 for small allied industries and E10,000 for large allied industries. Only paid up members will be allowed to vote and be voted on the day of the elections on May 9.