KUALA LUMPUR: The Federation of Livestock Farmers Association of Malaysia (FLFAM) is looking forward to a dialogue with the new government on the shortage of eggs to have a win-win solution for consumers and poultry farmers.
Lee Yoon Yeau, deputy president of FLFAM, said the root cause for the shortage of eggs was the movement control order imposed during the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, when many poultry farms were incurring hefty losses.
To reduce their losses, many cut down on production leading to the shortage of eggs today, he said.
The supply of eggs would take some time to resume, he said, adding that it would also depend on the profit margin and the quantity of chicks bought by poultry farms.
“It is difficult to answer the question on when the supply of chicken eggs will be back to pre-pandemic levels. Issues such as price, raw material cost and disease outbreak are uncertainties faced by poultry farmers.
“Poultry farms have incurred losses for two to three years now, followed by price control imposed by the government, farmers are facing disasters,” he said.
Lee is also unable to predict whether the upcoming Chinese New Year would be affected by the shortage of eggs required to make cookies and delicacies.
On the price of Type A eggs surging to RM18 per tray in Terengganu, Lee urged the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs to take actions against irresponsible sellers.
The ministry has set the retail price of Type A eggs at RM0.45 where a tray of Type A eggs would be RM13.50 in Peninsular Malaysia.
Lee also said each poultry farm would have its way to operate and FLFAM is unable to speak on behalf of all the farms.
On the complaints of poultry farms imposing an additional 2 sen per egg as surcharge, Lee said it could be due to the cost for transportation.
Lee said there was no surcharge earlier as farms were able to absorb the cost while egg prices were determined by market forces.
“The ceiling price set by the government is even lower than the production cost. The subsidy provided by the government is insufficient to maintain and the subsidy is not stable. The cashflow of farms can be affected by all these factors,” he said.