Who should bear increasing input cost?

Would you please share more about the markets you are representing for Novus International?
Dr. Krishnamurthy – Have been in the poultry industry for 2 decades and currently representing Novus International in the poultry markets of South & East India and Sri Lanka. Speaking with respect to India, Indian Poultry sector is valued at around INR 1.3 Lakh crores and South & East makes up more than 60% of the sector. Broiler Industry is more consolidated with more than 80% integration and this region houses the top broiler integrators of the country. With respect to layer industry, with AP being the topmost State, South & East contributes more than 70% of total eggs produced in the country. Further, South has most of the parent stock, with all major players having their breeding farms located in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Telangana, amounting to almost 65 to 70% of countries breeder population.
Rising prices of feed raw material is the biggest concern for the feed industry, what would be your tips to feed millers and farmers to control the production cost?
Dr. Krishnamurthy – Yes, the rising prices of major raw materials like maize & soyabean meal is the biggest concern for the poultry industry as it increases the production costs by great extent. It demands multiple approach involving various stakeholders in the production systems with a focus to improve the efficiency of production processes including the precise feed formulations utilizing the alternative & local raw materials, maintaining pellet quality, improving the feed quality & safety to protect the ingredients & to mitigate the adverse effects of harmful substances on animals through feed additives such as antioxidants, mycotoxin binders, organic acids such as protected benzoic acids etc.
The alternatives & local raw materials come into picture mainly during the raise in the prices of Maize & Soybean Meal. As we know, alternative raw materials have major downsides with respect to quality, availability, significant nutrient variations, & poor digestibility along with ANFs. Its pertinent to give more emphasis on using the high-quality & proven feed enzymes be it Protease, NSPases & Phytases which will mitigate the risks associated.
Along with the above steps at feed side, it demands a focus at farm level as well to control the production costs by improving the biosecurity measures, farm management practices & enhancing water quality to reduce disease incidences and mortality.
Dr. Sood – 2021, is the year where the exorbitant price of Soyabean meal prompted the hike of other protein sources used in the industry. In feed industry it is always challenging to balance feed cost with high performance. In this scenario rather reducing the feed cost, key objective should be optimizing the feed cost without compromising the performance.

  • Replacing complete Soyabean meal with other non-conventional protein sources has some limitations however feedmillers can partially replace Soyabean meal with other protein sources which also reduce significant production cost of feed.There are feed additives and feed supplements which help to reduce feed cost example Enzymes like Protease, Phytase and Xylanase.
  • Adulteration of the alternative protein sources is one of the key factors every feed miller should consider. While selecting alternative raw material, the feed miller and farmer should consider quality parameters like mycotoxins.
  • Farmers and feedmillers should also consider latest practices being followed to assess the Raw material quality like Trypsin Inhibitors in Soyabean meal and Mycotoxin analysis in alternative raw materials used. Indian Soyabean meal contains a good amount of TI, as the TI will rise in SBM, the level of digestibility will decrease so it is very imperative to consider such advances for the benefit of the farmer/feedmiller. Due to Global power crisis, the prices of the amino acids have shoot up, to optimize feed cost one has to look into different perspective of using amino acids and maintaining stocks.
  • Poultry being a monogastric animal, Gut Health plays a very important role in digestion, absorption of nutrients and most critical role in immunity to fight against viral as well as bacterial diseases.

Antibiotic resistance is another challenge that the industry is facing, where the industry is heading (is it increasing or reducing)?
Dr. Krishnamurthy – When we talk about the Antibiotic Resistance or AMR, many a times we see Poultry /livestock industry being projected or blamed for spreading of AMR in humans. However, as echoed by various experts in the industry & scientific reviews, such claims are mostly based on assumptions, inaccurate estimates & methods, or extrapolating a narrow database. As stated by various industry bodies, many scientific reviews have implied that human is also a huge contributor to AMR with use of over-the counter antibiotics without prescriptions (as per CDSCO data, 48% of antibiotics are freely sold from medical stores without prescription). With increased awareness among producers & consumer preferences, with the intervention of National Action Plan on AMR & with the advent & availability of various alternatives to antibiotics (organic acids, probiotics, essential oils, phytogenics etc), it’s likely that Antibiotic Resistance challenge may come down as we move ahead.
Gut health is the foundation for performance and profitability in animal production. How does Novus product portfolio work to improve the same?
Dr. Krishnamurthy – Gut is very vital for animal performance as it’s just not only involved in breaking down & absorbing nutrients but has an important role in immunity & developing a protective barrier against infections & diseases. We at Novus are committed to not just reducing feed costs, but also focusing on optimizing gut health and supporting a greater plane of nutrition for livestock and poultry production globally. Novus International, few years back, launched its multi-phase strategic plan, Project Destiny, which was aimed at establishing Novus as a “leader in gut-health -solutions for sustainable production of protein through nutrition”. Through this project, Novus has launched robust & well-researched Eubiotic solutions in addition to its existing portfolios of highly bioavailable bis-chelated organic mineral, to ensure to help our customers in overcoming gut health issues and eventually improving their financial outcomes.
The pandemic has disrupted the value-chain which also resulted in increase in input cost. Who should be paying for this – manufacturer, producer or consumer? Please share your views.
Dr. Krishnamurthy – Pandemic brought lot of disruptions with significant impact on the Global Poultry Industry affecting all the stakeholders in the value-chain – disrupting supply chain, infecting workers & impacting the demand. Manufacturer’s / producer’s input costs rose steeply leading to increased production costs and invariably affecting their financials & survivability. Consumers had to shell out more from their pockets to meet their daily needs of protein. So, who should be paying for these increased costs? It is for everyone involved in the value chain to bear these costs proportionately to have a sustained and healthy situation in the industry.
Dr. Sood – As the cost of production went up for broiler and eggs, major players have significantly downsized their production as sales realizations did not match with the increased cost of production. Downsizing is also done to deal with the high level of uncertainties pertaining to demand due to the lockdown and constantly rising raw material prices.
Average farm gate price of chicken has increased to Rs 110-115 per kg from Rs 75-85/kg while retail prices have jumped to Rs 200-220/kg from about Rs 150-160/kg.In Poultry sector for any increase in input cost results the first impact is on manufacturer and producer. For sure further cascading effect will reach to end consumer. Broiler meat in the past has been considered to be delicacy but because of increasing levels of urbanization with higher levels of disposable income, changing food habits, more exposure to global cuisines the Indian population is shifting more to a non-vegetarian diet, so poultry meat is increasingly seen as less of a luxury product and more as a daily staple diet.
Poultry meat is preferred over other meat products as considered more hygienic and available throughout the year across the country at relatively lesser prices than fish/mutton. We can say despite time being increase for consumer it will not much impact on over all consumption pattern.
Moreover, broiler and egg market prices are always depend on demand and supply practices. Due to pandemic for sure value chain has disrupted significantly which leads to lower production from manufacturer results in major capital loss of manufacturer and producer.
Post pandemic one noteworthy impact has seen about consumer understood importance of protein. This impact created ready mindset of consumer to pay bit premium or higher price of eggs and chicken
How the poultry and dairy industry has changed in course of your career? What do you predict in 5 years down the line?
Dr. Sood – The Poultry and Dairy industry have evolved many folds in last few years. Genetics, Animal health and feeding practices have changed drastically.
In Poultry Industry, according to Government database, egg production has been rising steadily having risen from 95 billion in 2017-18 to 105 billion the following year and 114 billion in 2019-20. Poultry meat production has been expanding from 3.7 MMT in 2017-18 to 4.1 MMT in following year and then 4.3 MMT in 2019-20.
In Dairy industry, the milk production is around 189 MMT which is twice of USA and 25% more than EU. It is 1/5 of the world’s total milk production. Growth rate in India was 4.5 in last two decades whereas, global growth rate was 2%. Remunerative prices and market access were main reasons for this growth. Around 100 million rural households are involved
in milk production. Turnover of dairy sector stands at 800,000 crores today.
In Poultry Industry, no wonders the share of the commercial farms have risen which are largely modernized and technically improved, same as in Dairy Industry the cattle farms are automated with efficient supply chain management. Many trade policies impacted the evolution and dynamics of the industry. The Poultry industry responds more quickly to market signals due to shorter production cycles.
Down the lane in 5 years, immense growth is projected in both the sectors. It has been projected that in the year 2023, the country may produce 136 billion eggs and 6.2 MMT poultry meat. Poultry meat and eggs is an ever-growing industry, 70% of population is willing to be nonvegetarian, processed meat demand have risen drastically in past few years, so growth potential is clear.
In Dairy, recently Government announced 15000 crores animal husbandry infrastructure fund which will increase milk processing capacity from 1200 LLLPD to 1700 LLPD. Liters. Government has also announced 13343 crores fund to implement National Animal Disease Program to eradicate FMD and brucellosis. These diseases reduce production by 10% which is worth of 80000 crores Rs. In Dairy, people are being educated efficient calf rearing, loose housing, breeding and improved management practices. Scientific breeding and grading up of Desi cows and Buffaloes by use of ET and IVF.
Various associations like CLFMA, PFI, IDB, NDB, ICAR institutes and private companies are working on skill development to bridge the gap between Industry and Institutions for the welfare of farmers.
This growth will not be without challenges as seen in the previous years, there will be challenges of volatility in the feed prices, rising feed cost and overall production cost and it will be price sensitive market. Many large players will establish backward and forward integrations, producing own feed material like maize and soybean or can opt for commodity derivates hedging and own processing industry resp.
In Dairy industry, BIS and Indian Livestock authorities have laid strict compliances and norms for safe and clean milk. Food safety norms have become very critical factor, to ensure robust growth, the first and important factor is – Consumer trust. Raising awareness among consumers for clean and healthy food will be utmost priority. Central and State Govt Authorities, Animal Husbandry Department along with mass media need to create mass awareness among consumers through the usage of print and social media. To fulfill all these, private and government authorities are working hands on hands to achieve the goals.
by NOVUS International