To make up for acute deficiency in animal protein foods, the government gave priority to the development of poultry, which is an effective and economical source to reduce the protein supply gap in the shortest possible time. To develop poultry, various incentives and facilities have been granted from time to time. Consequently, the gap has been reduced from 20.40 grams per capita daily in 1960 to 10.00 grams in 1989.
At the time of independence, the only commercial poultry farming in the country consisted of exotic stock of breeds like White Leg Horn, Rhode Island Red, New Hampshire etc., which were reared in limited numbers at Government poultry farms located at Lahore Cantt, Peshawar, Karachi and Quetta. The chicks hatched at their farms were supplied in villages. The country had thus been meeting its entire demands of eggs and poultry meat from rural poultry till 1962. Poultry farming on modern and scientific lines was started in 1963 with the introduction of hybrid strains of Broilers and Layers. Since then it has shown positive growth in the overall performance of the livestock sector.
The present position is that it is maintaining constant upward trend and is contributing towards the increase in Gross Domestic product through Livestock sector. It is also providing means to the rural and sub-urban population for augmenting their income. Poultry farming is within the reach of small entrepreneurs and is, therefore, offering them opportunities for investment. Eggs and chicken have been instrumental in off-loading demand pressure on our meagre resources of supplies of animal protein foods.
The study shows that the demands of eggs and poultry meat were met entirely from rural poultry during 1947-1962 and both from rural and commercial poultry from 1963 onwards. The rural poultry population rose from 7.14 million in 1947 to 12.84 million in 1962 and from 13.20 million in 1963 to 58 million in 1989. The commercial poultry population was nil during 1947-62 but rose from 13.82 million in 1963 to 165.91 million in 1989. The production of eggs (wholly desi) rose from 203.30 million in 1947 to 370.90 million in 1962 and from 402 million (20 million farm products included) in 1963 to 4,670 million (2,690 million farm products included) in 1989. Poultry meat production (wholly desi, there being none from farm) rose from 6,340 metric tonnes in 1947 to 14,880 metric tonnes in 1962 and from 16,000 metric tonnes (including 560 metric tonnes farm products) in 1963 to 167,790 metric tonnes (including 97,290 metric tonnes from farm) in 1989.
Starting from naught in 1963 in the commercial poultry farming sector, Pakistan produced 2,690 million farm eggs and 0.097 million metric tonnes poultry meat in 1989. This is a satisfactory development, although the commercial poultry farming sector has been under crises of one form or another at times.
To increase production of eggs and poultry meat, the existing two distinct sources, commercial poultry farming and rural poultry farming will be continued. In the commercial poultry farming sector, more poultry farms (broiler, layer and breeding farms), hatcheries, feed mills, processing plants, other allied industries, etc. …