The Food Processing Industry sector in India is one of the largest in terms of production, consumption, export and growth prospects. Food processing sector covers a wide range of items like fruits and vegetables; meat and poultry; milk and milk products, alcoholic beverages, fisheries, plantation, grains, confectionery, chocolates and cocoa products, mineral water, high protein foods etc. Based on the basic raw material usage, food industry can broadly be classified into plant-based and animal-based industry. Meat industry is one of the important segments of food processing industry in general and livestock/animal-based industry in particular. India is the fifth largest producer of eggs and ninth largest producer of poultry meat in the world. Compared with meat, poultry industry has registered significant growth. India ranks fifth in the world with annual egg production of 1.61 million tones. Poultry exports are mostly to Maldives and Oman. Indian poultry meat products have good markets in Japan, Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore. Coming back to home, over all, Andhra Pradesh counts for maximum egg production. Within Andhra Pradesh, Hyderabad is the city with maximum poultry and hatcheries. Besides the state of Andhra Pradesh, Vishakhapatnam, Chittoor, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa and North Eastern States are the major egg contributors. Both public and private sector organizations have their contribution in the poultry industry that has made India among the top players. There are 115 layer and 280 broiler hatcheries producing 1.3 million layer broiler and 280 million broiler parents. They in turn supply 95 million hybrid layer and 275 million broilers, day- old chick. Presently there are only five egg powder plants in India which is considered insufficient in view of growing export demand for different kind of powder - whole egg, yolk and albumen. The scope of foreign investment and state-of-the-art technology in this field is therefore tremendous. The years 2008 and 2009 witnessed a major set-back for the chicken industry which was on the growth graph in the past 10 to 15 years due to the bird flu influenza. In meat and meat processing sector, poultry meat is the fastest growing animal protein in India. The estimated production of meat was 6.5 million tonnes during 2007-08. India exports more than 500,000 million tonnes of meat of which major share are buffalo meat. Buffalo meat production during 2008-09 is estimated at 2.8 million tonnes and out of this about 21% is exported. Indian buffalo meat is witnessing strong demand in international markets due to its lean character and it's near organic nature. India is the 6th largest exporter of bovine meat in the world. In 2008-09, India's export of meat products (including buffalo meat, sheep/goat meat, poultry products, animal casings and processed meat) stood at U$ 1.25 billion.
Major types of meat
The per capita consumption of beef / buffalo in India is 2.8 kg, about half that of fish, but more than twice the average intake of mutton, pork and poultry. According to statistics compiled by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the total number of animals slaughtered for meat in India rose from 66,299,600 head in 1980 to 106,239,000 head in 2000, nearly doubling. There was a rise in the total number of cows and buffaloes slaughtered for meat in India from 15,644,000 head in 1980 to 24,300,000 head in 2000, an increase in total beef meat and buffalo meat production of 1,673,972 in 1980 to 2,863,400 in 2000.
It should be kept in mind that due to social reasons, the consumption of buffalo meat is restricted in India. While over 70% of Indians are non-...