Charles Bourns, chairman of the NFU’s poultry committee, said he knew of one farm in Gloucestershire, which usually reared 600,000 birds a time, that was now empty. Others were following suit, he warned. Biting particularly hard at this time of the year is the need to heat sheds constantly.
Bourns said: “There’s a desperate shortage of live British chickens. The supermarkets, who are committed to primary British chicken, are OK for now. But caterers will be feeling the effect.”