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November 14, 2008
 
Thai Broiler Weekly: New bird flu outbreak dashes hope of resuming fresh chicken export  (week ended Nov 13, 2008)  
 
An eFeedLink Exclusive
    
 
Price summary
 
This week's new bird flu outbreak northeast of Thailand has dimmed the country’s hope of resuming export of fresh or frozen chicken anytime soon.
 
But prices remain stable in the local market with the farmgate price even jumping by THB3/kg despite a government-ordered mass culling of birds in Sukothai province where the new outbreak was detected.
 
 
Market analysis
 
Since April this year, Thailand was declared bird flu-free by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE). Under OIE regulations, a country could be allowed export of fresh chicken six months after it had been declared free of the disease.
 
Had there been no bird flu case this month, Thailand could have asked OIE to be allowed to resume export of fresh broiler. It has been banned from doing so since the 2004 Asian bird flu epidemic.
 
Instead of fresh chicken, Thailand has been allowed to export cooked poultry meat since the 2004 epidemic. But local chicken exporters and processors have always wanted to resume fresh chicken export to expand their market.
 
Last year, the country exported over 330,000 tonnes of processed chicken to the EU, Japan and several other countries. In 2003, the year before the bird-flu outbreak, it exported more than 330,000 tonnes of frozen chicken and another 127,000 tonnes of pre-cooked chicken.
 
The latest bird flu outbreak was detected in the Nong Chang district in Sukothai, 430 km northeast of capital Bangkok.
 
The discovery came after five chickens at a farm got sick and died at the end of last month. Lab tests showed the chickens were infected with the H5N1 virus. Massive culling of chickens has been ordered by the Department of Livestock Development around the area. 
 
A war room has also been set up by the Public Health Ministry in the province to monitor the bird flu situation.
 

Markets

Prices
for whole dressed chicken

as of 
Nov 6
(in Thai baht/kg)

Prices
for whole dressed chicken

as of  Nov 13
(in Thai baht/kg)

Changes
(in Thai baht/kg)

Supermarkets (Bangkok)

64-66

64-66

0

Public markets (Bangkok)

58-60

58-60

0

Public markets (Suburbs)

55-58

55-58

0

Farm gate 

31-32 (liveweight)

34-35 (liveweight)

3

US$1=THB 34.990 (Nov 14)


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