Morocco targets expansion in poultry sector

By Jalal Bounouar, in Casablanca

- Last updated on GMT

The Moroccan poultry sector is looking to increase poultry production and exports
The Moroccan poultry sector is looking to increase poultry production and exports

Related tags Meat Livestock

The Morocco poultry sector is expanding steadily, and is eyeing export markets in neighbouring African countries for new sales. 

Poultry meat production in Morocco, one of the most important livestock sectors in the country, has increased by 7.7% over the past four years, according to statistics published by the Morocco professional poultry farming federation - FISA (Fédération Interprofessionnelle du Secteur Avicole). The industry supplies all of Morocco’s domestic demand for poultry, and while this has been the case for about 10 years,
“we have been working hard to increase our production,”​ said Chaouki Jerrari, FISA’s director, whose body represents an industry that generates Morocco Dirham MAD28 billion (USD2.9 billion) annually.

Speaking to GlobalMeatNews​, he stressed that the industry was making more efforts to increase poultry exports to its “traditional”​ markets in Africa, including neighbouring Mali, Senegal and Mauritania. “It’s hard for us to orient our exports to Europe now, but we will try to concentrate more on local markets where production is still growing [but not meeting local demand],”​ said Jerrari.

The industry in Morocco has benefited from the government agriculture development blueprint the ‘Green Morocco Plan’, which was launched in 2009 and has which has seen the public investment being sunk into target food production sectors. This includes Morocco’s production and export of poultry – with a programme created for 2011-2020, linking FISA with the government targeting investment of MAD3.76 billion (USD371 million) into the industry.

Mohammed Sadiki, the top bureaucrat (general secretary) at Morocco’s ministry of agriculture and fisheries declared last month (November) told a press conference at poultry sector expo in Casablanca that the goal of the programme is to guarantee domestic protein supplies, upgrade the poultry sector through investing in modernising livestock units.

One key initiative, he said, was linking poultry slaughterhouses to consumer egg packaging centres to create strategic links between the broiler and egg laying sectors: “Our strategic aim is the development of the export of poultry products,”​ he declared.

The ministry and FISA are now developing a new set of sanitary and phytosanitary standards that can be applied by Morocco’s poultry sector. The urgency of this work has been sharpened by H1N1 bird flu outbreaks in fellow north African countries Algeria and Tunisia. “We are making efforts to protect our production by increasing the veterinary control of poultry meat and eggs oriented towards local consumption or exportation,”​ Jerarri told GlobalMeatNews​.

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