September 8, 2020
Pakistan and Bangladesh: Feed and livestock in South Asia's red meat eating nations

The 375 million people living in Pakistan and Bangladesh have some of the world's fastest growing feed output. They are likely to become major consumers of red meat ruminant proteins.

By Eric J. Brooks
An eFeedLink Hot Topic
Pakistan has shrugged off coup attempts and domestic terrorism amid skyrocketing protein consumption. As Pakistan's population jumped from 142 million in 2000 to 212 million in 2018, meat production jumped 219%.

From 11.7kg in 2000, per capita meat consumption increased 47% to 17.2kg by 2018. Unlike India, chicken accounts for only 25% of Pakistani meat consumption. Due to its Islamic religious belief, Pakistanis eat more ruminant meat per capita. Based on FAO statistics, this consists mainly of beef (6.3kg), buffalo (1.7kg), chicken (4.5kg), sheep (2.1kg) and goat (1.6kg).

Egg consumption underwent a faster 224% increase over those same 18 years. This resulted in a 64% increase in per capita egg consumption, from 2.5kg at the turn of the century to 4.1kg by 2018.

Even so, Pakistan's feed sector has faced many challenges. In the early 2010s when political troubles peaked, feed output grew by only 0.8% annually – but the rate of expansion rebounded to 5% annually after 2015 when the political situation became stable. Despite much political and economic turmoil, Pakistani feed output went from barely 3 million tonnes in 2000 to 6.3 million tonnes in 2011 and an Alltech estimated 7.7 million tonnes in 2019.

Going forward, Pakistan appears to be entering an era of political stability. At this time, there is a good chance it will finally achieve the 7% annual feed output growth it has long been able of actualizing.

Less mature than India or Pakistan, Bangladesh once had the lowest per capita meat of any country in the world.  But this was partly counterbalanced by 19.7kg of per capita fish consumption.

Based on government figures, Bangladeshis consume per capita 9.4kg of meat, a vast improvement over the 3.5kg consumed in 2000. From 1.6kg of poultry meat and 0.2 million tonne produced  in 2000,  poultry meat per capita consumption (6.4kg) quadrupled and its production reached 1.03 million tonnes in 2019. Beef made a similarly impressive increase. From 1kg per capita consumption and 127,000-tonne output in 2000, 2019 saw personal beef consumption and output touch 2.7kg and 0.435 million tonnes respectively.

Per capita egg consumption tripled from 1.4kg in 2000 to 2.63kg in 2010 and over 5kg this year. Fast-rising egg consumption is not due to India-like lacto-ovo vegetarianism but genuine poverty: India's per capita 2019 GDP of US$2,350 is 46% higher than Bangladesh's US$1,600. Hence income regressive lines like eggs will see their consumption increase most rapidly at such an early development stage.

While its 165 million people still consume very little meat, Bangladesh is boosting feed output more rapidly than any other part of South Asia. It has grown 10% annually over the past two decades, more than doubling to 2.4 million tonnes by 2011 and an Alltech estimated 5.7 million tonnes in 2019.

Half of 2019 output was accounted for by broiler feed (2.78mt) – up a whopping 35% from 2.06 million tonnes just three years earlier in 2016. Layer output (1.60mt) accounted for 29.5% of feed production, itself up 29.5% from 2016 levels. Reflecting improving feed conversion ratios, dairy accounted for 3% of feed demand but its output stayed flat at the same 0.17 million tonne level, making up 3% of output.

Reflecting improved feed conversion and Bangladeshi aquaculture's struggles with shrimp disease outbreaks, aqua feed output only increased 10% over three years, totalling a million tonnes and 17.5% of 2019 feed output. Beef cattle account for a mere 2.6% of feed consumption but output is up 50% in three years, to 0.15 million tonnes.

Going forward, Bangladesh's feed is the least mature surveyed but this gives it the greatest potential for growth. Post COVID-19, it should sustain at least 8% to 8.5% annual growth, with feed output totalling 8.5 million tonnes by 2025

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