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What's happening in the Asian Poultry Market?

Rising incomes and changing demographics offer Asia’s poultry producers the chance to sell more, at higher margin products, but not without difficulties.

The Asia market for chicken meat and eggs is undergoing significant evolution, driven by rising incomes, changing demographics and tastes, presenting opportunities and challenges for the region's producers.

Outbreaks of African Swine Fever are leading to higher demand for, and production of chicken meat and, while outbreaks have primarily occurred in China, their impact is being felt beyond China's borders. Not only China producers are China's producers seeing an increase in demand for their product, but exporting countries, such as Thailand, are also responding by raising output.

Growth conditions

Short-term trends aside, in much of Asia, poultry meat consumption still remains below world averages, particularly in countries where population growth is high and, importantly, economic growth is strong, creating an environment for growing consumption. India, Indonesia and the Philippines, for example, are among those countries where growth is expected to be particularly strong due to rising incomes and generational change.

The growth in Asia's younger consumers, open to new ideas and with different tastes and preferences to those of older generations, increasingly means poultry producers need to adopt to new production practices and deliver different product to market.

Asia's younger consumers want value for their money, but they also want convenience. They are concerned with issues such as animal welfare and sustainability in a way that older generations were not, and want food that is nutritious, safe and healthy.

Additionally, brands are important for younger consumers. While, for producers, there is the challenge of developing a brand that resonates with consumers, this comes with opportunity of fostering loyalty and achieving higher margins and, while wet market may be supplanted by retail, the fast pace of change means retail's share is threatened by food-service.

Challenge of inputs

Not all changes, however, are easy to accommodate and Asian producers, like those in the rest of the world, are facing pressure to minimize use of antibiotics.

China and Russia have already implemented bans on use of antibiotics as growth promoters, as have several Southeast Asian countries, including Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, while Vietnam is expected to follow suit soon. This is placing strains on the region's nutritionists and veterinarians.

Source: Poultry International


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