A local piggery struggles for business

Plummeting piggery business, owing to mass import of pork from nearby the border towns in India, has Ruben Limbu, a local piggery farm owner in Phuentsholing, dismayed.

Ruben Limbu, the owner of Udhog Piggery, said he is confronting challenges of all sorts to sell his meat products (pork) in the local market owing to the trend.

“Because of the increasing import of pork from India, my business has dropped down to a record low this year. In order to keep my business afloat, I am selling it at a reduced rate, and this directly affects my revenue,” he said.

He added that he had availed a loan of nearly Nu 3 mn from Rural Enterprise Development Corporation (REDCL) a few years ago to commence his operation, but since last year he said he has been facing a problem to repay the loan on time.

“What aggravates our plight further is the lack of proper space in the market to sell our produce. Vendors selling imported meats have consumed the entire space in the local vegetable market and we have been deprived of a single counter in the premise,” said Ruben Limbu.

He also said that he has potential enough to cater the needs of entire Phuentsholing residents. “If the government is to promote our business- the local farm owners- they must put embargo on import of such products,” he added.

Currently, he has 60 pigs and 40 piglets with two boars for breeding in his farm. He started his business after procuring piglets from the breeding centers in Serbithang, Thimphu, and Gelephu.

He earns around Nu 1,80,000 at one culling in six months. With that, he disburses staff salary, buys feed for the pigs, and also repays his loan. “I pay Nu 12,000 in total every month to my two employees and spend Nu 90,000 a month on feed,” he said.

He believes that his inefficiency to maintain constant supply in the market is one prime reason for his declining business. “When we the local farm owners fail to meet the market demand, naturally, the competitors gain upper hands. But this can be sorted out if all the farm owners come together and work as a team,” he said.

Krishna Ghalley from Phuentsholing