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2. Livestock population, production and trends

This section examines the distribution and productivity of several species of livestock in the region. Production per head was calculated as the total production divided by the livestock population in the country. It is used as an indicator of productivity. This number was used to indicate whether changes in total production were due to an increase in livestock population or the productivity of animals in the country.1 In most countries examined there was an increase in cattle population.

Most countries examined showed an increase in cattle population, except in Bangladesh where the number of cattle tended to fluctuate over time without a consistent trend. In Bangladesh the number of cattle per person in rural areas has been decreasing over time. In the other countries studied, the number of cattle per person was stable or increasing slowly.

Figure 2. Cattle population

Production of meat and milk per animal varies considerably between countries. The rapid increase in milk production per head of cattle in Indonesia and Thailand (Figure 3) illustrates the potential to increase production in the region especially where production per head is at low levels.

Meat production per head of cattle, except in the Philippines where it is increasing rapidly, does not show any sustained trends (Figure 4). Meat production per head of cattle is much lower in Bangladesh than in other countries.

Figure 5 shows that the number of goats is increasing rapidly in Bangladesh. Its growth is slower in other countries. In contrast, Figure 6 demonstrates that production per goat is increasing in the Philippines and not in the other countries.

Figure 3. Milk production

Figure 4. Cattle meat production

Pig numbers are increasing in the region, in particular in Vietnam and Indonesia (Figure 7). Production per head is also increasing, most rapidly in the Philippines.

The chicken population has increased, with the largest increase noted in Indonesia (Figure 9). Sharp increases in meat production per chicken (Figure 10) were observed in the Philippines and Thailand, with a similar situation applying to egg production (Figure 11).

Figure 5. Goat population

Figure 6. Goat meat production

Figure 7. Pig population

Figure 8. Pig meat production

Figure 9. Chicken population

Figure 10. Chicken meat production

Figure 11. Chicken egg production

Figure 12. Bovine meat consumption, selected countries

Summary of trends in livestock production and consumption

Production of livestock products is increasing throughout the region. In almost all cases this is due to an increase in the productivity of animals as well as an increase in animal numbers.

In countries where income is increasing, the quantity of animal products consumed also increases (Figure 12 shows the consumption of beef over time). In the case of the Philippines and Vietnam, beef consumption is gradually increasing; in Thailand the increase has been more rapid in recent years. Similar trends for other livestock products may be noted, with expanding markets throughout the region.


1 The data in the above sections were obtained from WAICENT via the World Wide Web.

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