The chicken meat consumption in Romania will drop 11 percent in 2006 because of the avian flu, which diminished the number of poultry at breeders, the Romanian Rompres news agency reported on Tuesday citing a survey made by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).
Production of broiler chicken will drop 2 percent, down to 220, 000 tons, because of losses caused by the bird flu, according to the survey.
The number of broiler chicken dropped by 1.3 million capita in the first half of the year, as against the similar period of the last year. The lower number was also triggered by the restrictive sanitary-veterinary measures.
The chicken meat stocks will be reduced at the end of 2006 by 10,000 tons, the survey shows. Stocks stood at 20,000 tons last year, four times more than in 2004.
USDA experts believe that the chicken meat industry will straighten out in the future and consumption will increase. They expect the sector to recover the losses rapidly and derive profit as of next year, in the context of EU single market. Experts forecast an increase in chicken meat consumption over the next months, after the 80 percent drastic drop recorded after the burst of avian flu in Romania in October 2005.
Losses caused by the avian flu virus amount to 200 million euros in total, 70 million euros representing losses in the chicken meat sector, the report shows.
The last avian flu contagion center was closed in July.
Seven agricultural groups, with 50 percent of the commercial production, dominate the chicken meat market.