Government increases supply of local live chickens for tomorrow

     A spokesman for the Food and Health Bureau (FHB) said today (January 12) that the second-day operation of Ta Kwu Ling Checkpoint ran smoothly. Upon consideration, the Government decided to slightly increase the supply of local live chickens for the market tomorrow (January 13) from around 4 000 today to a maximum of 4 800.  The actual quantity of supply will depend on the decision and specific arrangements of individual poultry farms and wholesalers.

     The supply of live chickens tomorrow will come from nine poultry farms, involving eight wholesalers and 13 trucks. The wholesalers will make arrangements for transferal of chicken consignments to connecting vehicles at the checkpoint for distribution to 72 retail outlets in Hong Kong Island, Kowloon and the New Territories.

     The spokesman pointed out that since the checkpoint came into operation, the Government has been closely monitoring and continuously reviewing its operation procedures to ensure smooth running of the checkpoint, keep the environmental hygiene and biosecurity measures intact, and minimise the impacts on nearby residents.

     In response to nearby residents' concern on noise nuisance, the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (AFCD) today met the concerned residents again to listen to their views. The AFCD conducted a site inspection jointly with officers of the Architectural Services Department and decided that on top of the existing measures, additional noise insulating canvas would be installed in the checkpoint to further reduce the noise impacts on residents during the operating hours of the checkpoint.

     In addition, the AFCD held a meeting with local live chicken wholesalers and transporters this morning to review the operation of the checkpoint in the past two days. At the meeting, the AFCD solicited again the cooperation of the trade to continue supplying local live chickens via the Ta Kwu Ling Checkpoint with incremental increases in the light of experience, under the prerequisites of safeguarding public health and minimising the impacts on nearby residents.

     The spokesman said the Government will maintain communication with the trade and representatives of Ta Kwu Ling residents to coordinate on the quantity of live chickens supplied via the checkpoint and the number of vehicles involved every day, as well as to take their views on the operation of the checkpoint into account for the purpose of making adjustments accordingly.

     Reiterating that the Ta Kwu Ling Checkpoint is a contingency arrangement for the local live poultry trade, the spokesman said the checkpoint aims to facilitate the local live poultry trade to deliver live poultry to retail markets and minimise their loss when Cheung Sha Wan Temporary Wholesale Poultry Market has to cease operation. In the past two days, more than 10 local poultry farms delivered over 7 000 chickens to the retail outlets under this arrangement to avoid over-stocking.

     The spokesman said based on the operation of the checkpoint in the past two days, it is considered that the operation has been generally smooth and related requests from the trade and local residents have by and large been addressed. The Government will continue to closely monitor and review the operation of the checkpoint to ensure smoother operation and to minimise nuisance to residents nearby.

Ends/Monday, January 12, 2015
Issued at HKT 20:41