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Feed Price Drop Helps Poultry Industry

by 5m Editor
20 October 2008, at 7:20am

INDIA - With a bumper soybean harvest expected, the poultry industry is optimistic about better times ahead.

With the anticipation of a bumper soybean crop, the poultry industry is hoping for better days during the festive season, as the rates of soybean meal cools down in the domestic market, according to Financial Express of India.

The price of soybean meal, a major vegetable protein source in the poultry feed, has come down to 13,000 rupees (INR) per tonne from INR16,000 per tonne four months ago.

Due to the ban on the export of maize, a key component of poultry feed, which was lifted recently, the prices have dropped from INR10,500 per tonne to about INR8,000 per tonne at present.

According to the Soyabean Processor Association of India (SOPA) and ministry of agriculture estimates, the country is expected to produce 10 - 10.8 million tonne of soybean in 2008, as against 9.4 million tonne achieved during 2007, an increase of more than 14 per cent.

Due to very high feed cost in the last few months, the cost of production of both eggs and chicken had increased and poultry farmers were suffering losses on the sales of chicken and eggs.

During the last few months, prices of poultry feed had increased significantly up to Rs INR18,000 per tonne and now the poultry industry expects the price of feed to come down to INR14,000 per tonne soon.

"We are now gearing up for an increase in sales of eggs and chicken, as the winter months approach," Ricky Thaper, treasurer, Poultry Federation of India told the newspaper. Poultry feed comprises of around 70 per cent of the total cost of production of eggs and chicken.

As the ban on maize exports have been lifted, the poultry industry is now demanding that the government impose some sort of quota on exports, as that would prevent any future spike in prices because of uncontrolled exports. The poultry industry consumes around 3 million tonnes of soybean meal.

"We plan to request the government through the department of animal husbandry, to ban the export of soybean meal and maize or at least have some quota system on exports of feed ingredients," Mr Thapar said.

The country produces more than 2 million tonnes of broiler chickens annually and is the fifth largest producer in the world. The country is the largest producer of eggs, with a production of around 44 billion. The poultry industry contributes INR3.5 billion to the country's gross domestic product.

5m Editor