Chicken imports surge steadily
A shopper scrutinizes locally processed chicken meat at a Co.opmart supermarket in HCMC. Vietnam’s annual chicken imports exceed 100,000 tons - PHOTO: THANH HOA
HCMC - Vietnam has in the past few years spent hundreds of millions of U.S. dollars a year importing chicken meat, according to the General Department of Customs.
In 2016, local firms imported 140,000 tons of chicken meat with a total value of US$107.8 million. In 2015, the respective figures were 153,100 tons and US$111.1 million.
In the year to March 15, chicken imports had reached 22,300 tons worth US$19.8 million. The pre-tax average price of imported chicken ranges from US$0.72 to US$1 a kilo.
Vietnam mainly buys chicken meat from the U.S., Brazil and South Korea. The volume from the U.S. always makes up more than half of total chicken imports.
Chicken imports are now subject to different tax rates depending on the origin of chickens. The import tariff for whole chickens is 40% while chicken wings and thighs are taxed 20%.
Tariffs are lower for imports from the markets with which Vietnam has signed trade agreements. For example, whole chickens and chicken wings from South Korea are duty-free while chicken thighs are subject to an import tariff of 5%.
Huge chicken import volume has left direct impact on domestic chicken prices. In the past, the price of white-feather chickens dipped to a mere VND15,000-18,000 a kilo.
Chicken prices go up in Dong Nai again
A number of chicken farms in Dong Nai Province said the price of white chickens in late March increased to VND28,000-36,000 per kilo after having fallen to VND15,000-18,000.
Nguyen Van Ngoc, vice president of the Southeastern Livestock Association and the owner of a chicken farm in Dong Nai, said white chickens were now selling for VND28,000 a kilo at the farm, up VND7,000-10,000 from mid-February.
The price of buff chickens has also gone up to VND27,000-28,000 per kilo, a rise of VND3,000-4,000 from mid-February, but farmers are still incurring losses as production costs are as high as VND35,000-36,000 a kilo, said Ngoc.
Nguyen Thanh Phi Long, technical director of Long Binh Livestock Co. Ltd. in Dong Nai, said the price of white chickens ranged from VND30,000 to VND36,000 per kilo depending on type.
The white chicken price surge in Dong Nai, Long said, has resulted from the weather anomaly which has affected chicken growth and productivity.
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