GLOBAL POULTRY TRENDS: Rapid Growth in Asia’s Egg Output09 May 2015
Accounting for more than 60 per cent of the Asian total, China dominates egg production in the region, says industry analyst, Terry Evans, in his latest review of the hen egg sector in Asia.
Of the major egg-producing regions Asia expanded most rapidly during the period 2000 to 2013 (Table 1 and Figure 1).
During those years output in Asia grew at 2.5 per cent per year from 29 million to 40 million tonnes. As global growth from 51.1 million tonnes to 68.3 million tonnes averaged less than this at 2.3 per cent per year, Asia increased its share of world production from 56.8 to 58.6 per cent.
|Table 1. World egg production and layer numbers in Asia|
|World egg production (million tonnes):|
|Layer numbers (millions):|
|Totals may not add up due to rounding
World egg production looks likely to continue to expand by more than two per cent per year hence output in 2015 could approach 71.5 million tonnes, of which Asia may well contribute more than 42 million tonnes or around 59 per cent. It should be noted that the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) figures include commercial production, estimates of backyard output and the production of hatching eggs.
The number of layers in the world during the review period increased from 4,976 million to 7,035 million with the total in Asia rising from 3,055 million to 4,494 million (Table 1). Thus the increase in the number of birds in Asia accounted for 70 per cent of the expansion in the global total.
Asia’s share of the tonnage of eggs produced is lower than that for bird numbers as yields are generally not as high as in the other major producing regions and the average egg weight is also lower.
Not surprisingly, China dominates Asian egg production accounting for more than 61 per cent of the regional total (Tables 2 and 3).
With an annual growth rate of a little over two per cent, production in mainland China escalated from 18.6 million tonnes to 24.5 million tonnes - or 36 per cent of the world total - between years 2000 and 2013. However, China’s growth rate was slow when compared to the five per cent per year achieved by India, Indonesia and Pakistan and Malaysia’s four per cent.
|Table 2. Hen egg production in Asia ('000 tonnes)|
|China, Hong Kong SAR||0.4||0.3||0.3||0.3||0.3||0.3||0.3|
|China, Macao SAR||1.0||0.6||0.4||0.4||0.4||0.4||0.4|
|Iran Isl. Rep.||579.0||758.0||725.4||686.5||558.7||625.0||665.0|
|Korea Dem. Peo. Rep.||110.0||130.0||104.0||114.0||120.0||125.0||125.0|
|Lao Peo. Dem. Rep.||10.0||13.0||14.8||15.0||15.5||16.0||16.5|
|Occ. Palestinian Terr.||36.9||37.4||36.6||29.0||30.0||24.0||19.0|
|Syrian Arab Rep.||127.3||155.2||162.4||163.3||171.9||147.5||123.3|
|United Arab Emirates||14.6||17.2||30.0||28.0||28.5||29.0||30.0|
The leading egg producing nations in the region (Table 4) accounted for some 36.3 million tonnes in 2013 or almost 91 per cent of the Asia total of 40 million tonnes. Although this group’s combined output expanded by some 9.4 million tonnes during the 13 years, as the rate of growth was only 2.3 per cent per year, their share of the regional total actually declined by a couple of percentage points.
Production in the other countries in the region rose by 4.3 per cent per year as their combined output climbed from 2.13 million tonnes to 3.66 million tonnes. Among these countries, rapid growth of some 10 per cent per year was recorded by Myanmar and Uzbekistan, while an expansion of almost six per cent per year pushed annual output in Viet Nam towards 380,000 tonnes.
Although a more moderate four per cent per year expansion increased production in Saudi Arabia to 220,000 tonnes, there appears to have been little growth in this country since 2010.
|Table 3. Asia's egg production ranking in 2013
|Iran Isl. Rep.||665.0|
|Korea Dem. Peo. Rep.||125.0|
|Syrian Arab Rep.||123.3|
|United Arab Emirates||30.0|
|Occ. Palestinian Terr.||19.0|
|Lao Peo. Dem. Rep.||16.5|
|China, Macao SAR||0.4|
|China, Hong Kong SAR||0.3|
Because production in mainland China is so much greater than in any of the other leading countries (Table 4), this country has been excluded from Figure 2.
With annual growth of just over two per cent, production in mainland China escalated from 18.6 million tonnes in 2000 to 24.5 million tonnes in 2013. According to Wayne Liu of Ovodan Food (China), egg farms in China are currently expanding in size. The largest has more than three million layers while there are five with over one million birds and at least a further 10 such units are under construction.
In 2005, Jiangsu Province, with a total of 150 million layers, only one farm had more than 200,000 birds. Today, this province has more than 15 such operations. All of China's commercial laying birds are in cages. The split between brown-shelled and other colours is estimated to be 70:30.
|Table 4. Leading egg producers in Asia ('000 tonnes)|
|Iran Isl. Rep.||579||758||725||687||559||625||665|
|Total of above||26,877||29,967||33,928||34,242||34,664||35,698||36,320|
India has achieved five per cent per year growth, pushing production to 3.8 million tonnes in 2013. However, according to data provided by the International Egg Commission (IEC), output reached almost 4.2 million tonnes in 2013.
Commercial layers are all housed in cages. Some 92 per cent of eggs are white-shelled the remainder being brown. India has the lowest egg production cost in Asia. This, plus a relatively weak currency, has been a big factor in boosting the demand for Indian dried egg products in South-east Asia.
Of the major players in Asia, Japan is the only country not to show any growth during the review period around an average annual figure of some 2.5 million tonnes.
Almost 96 per cent of birds are kept in cages with around 3.5 per cent in barns and less than one per cent on free-range.
The egg industry in Indonesia has recorded a similar growth to India as output doubled between 2000 and 2013 to reach 1.2 million tonnes.
Production in Turkey recorded particularly strong growth of almost 12 per cent per year in the three years since 2010 with output exceeding one million tonnes in 2013. For 2014, output appears to have risen by four per cent to 1.07 million tonnes.
All birds are housed in cages while the white to brown egg ratio is 79:21.
Outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in Iran cut production dramatically in 2011. Although a recovery has ensued since then, the data published by the IEC for 2013 at around 900,000 tonnes point to a far greater improvement than the FAO figures.
The commercial flock is housed in cages. Some 98 per cent of production comprises white-shelled eggs.
Each of the remaining four countries in this region’s 'Top 10' produces more than 600,000 tonnes a year, Malaysia being the biggest with some 660,000 tonnes.
Only brown eggs are produced in this country. As is common throughout Asia, most of Malaysia’s commercial layers are housed in cages, with only a tiny proportion (less than one per cent) being kept in barns or on free range.