MHP, Ukraine’s leading chicken producer, has detailed the challenges that Russia’s invasion has caused production in a stock exchange update.

Chairman John Rich has said the firm’s priorities are safeguarding staff and maintaining production to support food security.

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MHP employs more than 26,000 people in Ukraine and supplies about 400,000t of chicken meat to the domestic market – equivalent to half of all chicken commercially produced for consumption.

“MHP, like all Ukrainian companies, has encountered significant difficulties with its supply chain. Ukrainian roads are currently dangerous, especially in the active zones,” said Mr Rich.

“There have been highly reliable reports that military vehicles are shooting without any regard for civilian lives, even at trucks of food supplies vital for the survival of Ukrainian women and children.

“Many trade channels have ceased operation due to the threat from Russian forces.

“The Company is therefore seeking alternative ways to deliver these vital supplies to the needy.

Free delivieries

“The Company is also pledging unconditional and free deliveries to all our valiant defenders as well as hospitals, communities and all who are facing difficult conditions where it is even remotely in the company’s power to deliver.

“Needless to say, because of the damaged supply routes, the company is currently unable to export any Ukrainian produce.

“Inevitably, this is causing the company to incur significant unplanned losses.

“As the valiant Ukrainian defenders put their lives at risk to resist the Russian aggressor, MHP will continue to fight hard to ensure the safety of its employees.

“In order to ensure the National Food Security of Ukraine, MHP’s production will not cease.”