PUTRAJAYA: Poultry farmers in Johor have been given a six-month extension to comply with hygiene and operational standards.
Deputy Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister Datuk Chua Tee Yong said that 57 poultry farmers who received orders to cease operations by the Johor Veterinary Services Department's have been given until June next year to improve.
“They have pledged to make the necessary improvements to comply with the requirements.
“However, I hope both parties will improve their communication to avoid future misunderstandings.
“The state authorities should take the initiative to engage the farmers, and the farmers should consult the state authorities on the standards required of them,” he added.
Chua was speaking to reporters after chairing a meeting between representatives of the Department and three poultry associations in Johor.
The poulty farmers had complained to the media that they were asked to cease operations early this month.
They alleged it might have been linked to their refusal to let a private company collect chicken waste from their farms.
The Department had earlier issued them with a notice to improve conditions after it conducted an audit following public complaints.
“The farmers appealed to us in May and we granted them six months to improve,” said the department's director Dr Kamarudin Md Isa.
“However, when we conducted checks recently, we found that many of them still had not improved,” he added.
Responding to the farmers' allegations that the department did not give them details on the improvements required, Dr Kamarudin said some were not present when department officials conducted the checks.