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Crackdown on chicken trade angers breeders

by 5m Editor
11 April 2005, at 12:00am

HONG KONG - Stringent measures proposed by the government to tighten up the local chicken industry has drawn a fiery response from trade representatives and legislators. Chicken breeders and wholesalers rounded on government officials at a Legislative Council food safety and environmental hygiene panel special meeting Thursday over government plans revealed last month. Braving criticisms of the govern-ment&#39;s ``hidden agenda to ultimately shut down the industry,&#39;&#39; Deputy Secretary (food and environmental hygiene) for Health, Welfare and Food, Eddy Chan, insisted a city as densely populated as Hong Kong has no room for the long-term development of live chicken breeding. Last month, the government prop-osed cutting the maximum allowable number of chickens bred locally from 3.7 million to 1.8 million. The current population is about three million. Also proposed was a voluntary license surrender scheme for which the bureau is seeking HK$264 million to compensate farmers and wholesalers. Compensation would be capped at HK$3 million for farms and HK$1.2 million for stalls. <i>Source: TheStandard</i>

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