October 20, 2021

An overview of short and long-term impacts on India's poultry industry

An eFeedLink Hot Topic


Bird flu was India's unexpected guest in 2021 and affected poultry consumption in the first two months of the year. Then the second wave of COVID-19 started which again affected the supply chains of broilers and eggs. Skyrocketing soymeal prices added fuel to the situation. These factors resulted in reduction of order placements all over India.

Then poultry feed millers and farmers started using alternative protein sources. But there is a limit to it. Monthly broiler production was down to 320 million head in July with broiler prices remaining in a profitable zone. Poultry consumption went down by 20 to 30% due to festivals from August to the first week of November.

Indian consumers have understood the importance of eating poultry and eggs to improve immunity. Due to lockdowns, although consumption from dining out went down, household consumption went up, increasing overall per capita consumption of poultry and eggs. Online delivery companies like Licious, Fresh to Home, etc. played an important role. Now many local poultry companies have also started online delivery platforms in addition to their existing offline physical shops. This will have a long-term effect on the Indian poultry sector. The focus will shift from production to marketing. It's expected that by 2026, at a 12-15% growth rate, broiler production will double. Poultry and egg consumption would also rise.

About 50 million Indians is directly or indirectly dependent on poultry farming. About five million tonnes of poultry meat was produced in 2019 (US$11.4 billion), but per capita consumption is still at 3.4 kg. About 109 billion eggs were produced in the same period (US$6 billion), but per capita availability is only 80 eggs.

Small and large companies have both been affected badly by the market volatility in the last 18 months. Suppliers have helped companies to survive by extending credit terms and continuing product supplies. Very few companies reduced salaries.

During the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, webinars were organised by various industry stakeholders to keep companies motivated and updated about what is happening nationally and internationally.

That said, it is suggested that banks need to be more open minded to extend loans to poultry companies. The government should also control problems which the industry can't, like prices of corn and soymeal, and import duties.


- Dr. Dinesh T. Bhosale