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Indian Poultry Industry Current Status And Future Prospects

R. Richard Churchil, Scientist and K. Narayanankutty, Sr. Scientist
AICRP on Poultry Kerala Agricultural University
Mannuthy, Kerala - 680 651

Table 1: Poultry Development in India
  1970 1980 1990 1995 2000 e 2020 e
Egg production 2 12 23 27 33 120
Egg availability/person 10 18 28 30 33 90
Broiler production (million) 4 30 190 275 700 4000
Poultry meat output ('000 tonnes) 121 197 412 578 700 4200
Chicken availability/person (g/yr) 220 266 500 633 700 3100
Human population (million) 548 683 846 916 1000 1337

Note: E-estimated values

Indian Poultry industry is growing rapidly at a rate of 15 to 20 per cent
during the last two decades and is now a Rs. 65 billion mega-industry
providing employment to 1.5 million people.(See Table 1)

In terms of international ranking, India is fourth in production of eggs and
nineteenth in broiler production. Despite such growth, annual per capita
consumption of egg and meat in the country is low at approximately 33 eggs
and 700 g of meat. By international standards these levels are too low. To
achieve optimum level i.e. 180 eggs and 11 kg meat per person annually (as
recommended by the Indian Council of Medical Research), India will have to
achieve quantum growth rapidly.(See Table 2)

Table2: Per capita availability of cereals and pulses
per day (g) in India

Year Cereals Pulses Total
1951 334.2    60.7     394.9
1961 399.7   69.0      468.7
1971 417.6   51.2      468.8
1981 417.3   37.5      454.8
1992 443.0   33.4      476.4

It is alarming to note the receeding per capita pulse availability (plant
protein). The gap is requirement for protein can be bridged with the
increased supply of protein from animal sources. The solution seems to
remain with the poultry industry more particularly with the broiler

Much to the credit of genetics, breeding and biotechnology, several
breakthroughs in poultry science and technology have led to the development
of genetically superior birds capable of high production, even under hot
climate. Manufacture of high tech. poultry feed, pharmaceuticals and health
care products including vaccines are a few of the important factors
contributing to higher productivity.

The poultry sector in India reflects the dual sources, i.e., commercial
poultry and backyard poultry. The commercial sector depends on imported
purelines and grand parents. The parents and commercial birds from these
imported lines are multiplied in commercially run hatcheries mainly in and
around cities and peri-urban area. Nearly 85 per cent of total egg
production and almost the entire commercial broiler production are from
improved poultry birds in this organised sector. On the other hand, even
today more than 40 per cent of the poultry population in the country
consists of different types of indigenous chicken, which thrives only on
scavenging. The thrust from this area is therefore very evident that this
low yielding domestic population is replaced with the moderately yielding
cross-breeds. It is in this regard, AICRP on poultry contributed much to the
rural poultry development and in the context of renewed interest on village
chicken production, the efforts of AICRPs are to be refined for the
sustenance of this sector.

The haphazard consump-tion pattern of poultry products in India is another
cause for concern while thinking in terms of promoting poultry production.
India has nearly 70 per cent of its population living in the villages. As a
matter of fact, more than 65 per cent of the eggs and 70 per cent poultry
meat produced are consumed by only one fourth of the population residing in
the urban areas in the country. In a typical Indian village, the number is
probably not more than 10 eggs. It is estimated that the present annual
consumption of eggs in villages can be matched to the national average.
Therefore, it is high time for the State Agricultural Universities and other
research organisations to take up projects on market research, an area,
neglected for decades specially at village level.

Rural Poultry in India
Backyard poultry keeping is practised by the rural people since the ancient
days. As on now, around 40 per cent of the total chicken population is in
backyards. The birds are usually low producers with high resistance to

Though the eggs produced by the rural poultry are not in significant
proportion with the total production, it helps the rural masses in
self-employment and caters much needed animal proteins. The need to adopt
commercial exotic crossbreeds has been much over-emphasised in the name of
development that, the rural people with scarce resources take to practising
commercial poultry in the backyard. These improved birds obviously do not
perform to their full potential in there conditions. In such circumstances,
it is advisable to introduce birds with capacity to produce 120 to 180 eggs
and attain optimum body weight with minimum inputs in the backyards.

At present, most of our poultry production units are located near urban
areas, it costs the rural consumer atleast 50 per cent more than an urban
consumer. The answer lies in the promotion and encouragement of small
production units in the villages itself to cater to the rural needs. This is
not as simple as it sounds. It involves setting up a production unit but
also a very complicated gamut of functions like transfer of technology,
making assistance and above all training to small entrepreneurs with a
relatively lower level of education, spread over thousands of villages. It
is in this context that traditional poultry farming continues to have
relevance in India, and perhaps, in most other developing countries.

Rural Poultry Scenario-Special Reference to Kerala
In contrast to the phenomenal growth of poultry in the southern states of
India, poultry production in Kerala remained largely as a backyard venture
with a few deep litter units scattered throughout the state. Involvement of
the masses in egg production continues to be the order of the day in Kerala.

The growth of poultry production in the state since 1961 is given below.
With the national average of 290 eggs/bird from commercial varieties and 45
eggs/bird from backyard chicken annual egg production of India stands at 33
billion mark today. The picture is different in Kerala, the state merely
holding 1.2 per cent of total land area. Notwithstanding to its size, the
state contributes around seven per cent of total egg production. More to
emphasise at this context is that the entire production is harvested from
backyards of Kerala. This "Kerala Model" has to be propagated at national
level and which at the present context has to be viewed as an eye-opener for
the policy makers also.

Consumption of Poultry Population In Kerala (In Lakhs)

Category 1961 1972 1982 1996
Hen 41.83 61.55 87.62 133.70
Cocks 11.91 15.88 21.75 48.86
Chicks 33.35 41.01 35.82 73.90
Total fowls 87.09 18.75 145.19 256.46
Ducks 3.87 3.62 5.30 11.87
Others 0.10 0.01 0.34 1.12
Total poultry 91.06 122.08 150.83 269.5

Comparison of egg production (million nos.)

Year India Kerala Percentage share
1992-93 22740 1774 7.8
1993-94 24800 1844 7.4
1994-95 26900 1916 7.1
1995-96 28130 1991 7.1
1996-97 (e) 30100 2069 6.8
1997-98 (e) 32510 2150 6.6
Area 3290 39 1.18

Role of Kerala Agricultural University in Promoting Rural Poultry Production

Performance of Athulya (ILM 90)

Hen-housed egg production potential 282
Average egg weight (g) 58.2
Main daily feed consumption (g) 119
Feed per dozen eggs (kg) 1.94
Laying house mortality Less than 1 per month
Return over feed cost per bird Rs. 42-43*

Note:* Based on the result of Random Sample Laying Test published by
government of India (Ministry of Agriculture)

The poultry population has more than doubled in the past 32 years in Kerala.
The improved lines in Kerala during 1961 were 3.89 per cent, which went upto
47.39 per cent in 1996. This single factor contributed to a large extent
towards productivity enhancement in the rural sector. Co-ordinated efforts
on the part of Kerala Agricultural University (Poultry Science division),
State Poultry Development Corporation and District and Grama Panchayats are
the pivotal points for productivity enhancement in the rural poultry sector.
Poultry Science Division of Kerala Agricultural University plays a
significant role as the primary breeder, State Animal Husbandry Farms, the
role of multiplying agencies of the crossbreeds and the District/Grama
Panchayats, organising the chick nurseries from where party grown crossbred
chicks reach the households. The improved varieties of chicken made
available from Kerala Agricultural University are:

'Athulya' (ILM 90) - Developed at the AICRP on poultry breeding (Mannuthy
centre) under the agies of ICAR.

'Gramalakhsmi' - Evolved at the University Poultry Farm, Kerala Agricultural
University, Mannuthy

'Gramapriya' - Received and multiplied from Project Directorate on Poultry,

See Performance of Athulya ILM-90 below Poultry Breeding Activities by AICRP
in India

During the last three decades of functioning of AICRP, it is to the credit
of scientists working at these centres that several high yielding strains
were released. These are ILI-80, ILM-90, HH-260, Kalinga Brown, and Carigold
on layer side while on the broiler side are BB-77, IBL-80, IBB-83 and
IBI-91. The AICRP after three decades of operation has with it one of the
richest poultry germplasm in the world eminently acclimatized to Indian
environment, the greatest asset and this should never be lost under any
circumstances. The ICAR should therefore launch aggressive measures to
restructure AICRP. Different possibilities need to be discussed at length to
give an impetus for the involvement of AICRP in rural poultry farming as
well as in commercial poultry industry to delink the same from the control
of multinationals which may otherwise lead to disastrous consequences at
the most unexpected moment.

Poultry Marketing

The poultry marketing in India has periods of 'ups and downs', as production
pattern does not match the consumption pattern.Although adequate
infrastructure is available for distribution of end products, there is no
organised market of these products. As a result, egg and broiler production
are much higher than the consumption leading to glut in the marketing and a
drop in selling price of these products, leading to losses to farmers. This
happens because large sections of the Indian population are vegetarian,
added to this, India has many festivals during which the consumption of eggs
and broilers get reduced. This calls for better understanding among private
companies in operations for a well-planned and structured growth of the

Poultry Processing

Industry has been actively talking about chicken processing in India from
ten years now but still processing industry continuous to be at an infant
stage, processing only about two per cent on the total broiler production.
Till middle of 1999, there were only three processing plants operating in
India, two based near Pune and third one at Hyderabad. But scenario is
changing fast. With political stability and growth oriented industrial
outlook, processing industry is all set to take off. Government has now
recognized the poultry industry as one of the growth engines for Indian
Poultry Export-Prospects and Challenges

Export of Poultry Production from India

1996-1997 1997-98 1998-99
Product Quality* Value** Quality* Value** Quality* Value**
Live poultry - 630.96 - 125.88 - 324.3
Hatching eggs 2327 1446.17 367 331953 4295 2966.5
Table eggs 1733 516.23 1856 587.57 1828 537.12
Egg power 2407 3519.02 1955 2927 800 1301.88
Frozen eggs 462 491.12 1660 1320.97 4457 999.03
Poultry meat 357.42 321.99 223.8 172.21 881.02 220.58
* Quantity in MT
** Value in Rs. Lakhs

Total contribution of poultry to the National GDP is nearly one per cent
with a value of Rs. 10 billion from this sector. India is exporting egg
powder, frozen egg yolk and albumen powder to Europe, Japan and other
countries. Poultry exports are mostly to Maldives and Oman. Indian Poultry
meat products have good market in Japan, Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore.
India's export of frozen poultry and poultry meat are expected to go upto
5,000 to 6,000 tonnes valued at Rs. 240 million in couple of years from now.
In recent years India started receiving export enquiries for egg powder from
the US and EU and for the table eggs from Japan, CIS and Hong Kong.

Further GATT/WTO negotiations have liberalized trade barriers and well known
KFC and McDonalds have opened their outlets in metro cities of India.
Referring to GATT agreement where 10 per cent subsidy is to be removed every
year, Indian exports should become viable after about five years period. The
next decade is certain to revolutionize the market for processed poultry

Regarding the challenges confronting the poultry trading on the wake of
globalization, the removal of Quantitative Restrictions as per WTO
agreement, may lead to possible unloading of surpluses at India at throw
away prices, endangering the local market affecting the farmers. A safeguard
mechanism is thus needed to check the surge of imports. Poultry meat is now
bound at 100 per cent duty rate from the previous 35 per cent by Government
of India. The safeguard is the maximum Effective Rate of Production (ERP) to
prevent collapse of domestic market as opposed to the tarriffication
process, often referred to high ceilings. The sky rocketing feed price is
the other challenge before the industry. This calls for liberal import of
necessary feed ingredients for poultry. The present tariff on maize (15 per
cent upto 3.5 lakh tones import and 50 per cent tariff above this quota)
poses supererogatory burden on the poultry feed industry. Reduction of
tariff escalation and expansion of Tariff Rate Quota (TRQ) should be
negotiated with agricultural products will be beneficial for poultry sector

Handbook of Poultry Feed From Waste Processing and use by A.R.Y. El Boushy and A.F.B. Van Der Poel

Special Feature :

The Benefit of feed from waste

Analytical studies and estimates of food and waste production.

Benefits derived from the use of feed waste.

Increase of population and the shortage of food supply.

The role of the developed countries towards the developing ones.

Dried Poultry Waste

Biological conservation methods to improve cage layer manure.

Protein recovery from waste water in poultry processing plants

Its use in feeding.

Biohazards of recovered studge.

Chemical Analysis and Nutritive value

Processing of the recovered protein effluent
Poultry By-Products

Feather meal

Poultry by-product meal

Hatchery by-products

Shell waste from egg-breaking plants

Spent laying hens

Biohazards of poultry by-products

Hide and Tanning Waste By-Products

Technological aspects

Chemical analysis and nutritive value

Its use as a feedstuff

Fruit, Vegetable and Brewers' WasteTomato residues
Potato residues
Date residues
Mango seed
Brewer's dried grains
Citrus pulp
Grape and wine residue
Apple residues
Guava seed

Municipal refuse

Processing of municipal refuse

Chemical analysis and nutritive value.

Municipal refuse in the nutrition of poultry

Palatability and Feed Intake Regulations

Sensory involvement in controlling feed intake

Palatability and feed acceptability

This book provides detailed scientific information on the processing of
agro-based material to provide inexpensive alternatives of non-traditional
feed stuffs for the use in poultry and farm animal's nutrition.

The types of waste material considered for such use include: waste from
poultry processing plants, hide and training, municipal refuse and sewage
sludge. Special attention is given to waste from fruit, vegetable and
brewer's dried grain. For each waste considered, detailed information on
yields, chemical analysis, nutritive values and biohazards were

The aim of this book is to create new feedstuffs for poultry and farm
animals from the agro-industry and to mobilize the neglected waste as a
feedstuff to lower the price of animal products such as eggs, white and red
meat, milk etc.

This book will be of great interest to all those involved in the animal feed
industry, poultry industry, agricultural universities and research
establishments where animal nutrition is studied and taught.
Egg & Egg Shell Quality
by Sally E. Solomon

This book have following special features:

The ovary and oviduct

The egg contents

The pattern of mineralisation

Structural variations in the mammillary layer

Surface defects

Physiochemical changes in oviducal architecture


Egg shell colour

Egg shell strength

This book draw attention to the fact like, our understanding of egg shell
quality, produce a shell which will meet the demands of both the consumer
and the chick, gives the vagaries of shell formation. Consideration is also
given to the provenance of the yolk and the albumen, their physiochemical
properties, the laboratory evaluation of quality and the influence of
temperature and humidity on the stability of both components under storage.

In this remarkable book-which will be of interest to all those involved in
the production, processing and distribution of eggs, Professor Solomon
describes the physiology of egg and egg shell formation and the factors
influencing quality and composition. With a unique and fascinating series of
photographs and electron micrographs, the author discusses the processes
that determine colour, size and shape, explaining how these may be
manipulated to achieve a desired result.


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