Poultry sector needs more Govt help
For a country like India which critically depends on the monsoon for its food needs it is important that it should focus on products that can supplement the nutrient requirements of its vast population uninterruptedly. Poultry is one such area which needs the focused attention of the Government on a sustained basis, at least for a decade.
Poultry is neither a new nor a nascent industry in our country. It has grown manifold in the last decade without any requisite support from the Government and has also braved the onslaught of diseases and epidemics. The worth of the sector, which has recorded double digit growth for several years, is estimated to be reaching a whopping Rs 1 lakh crore. By all estimates the sector will grow further with an increase in the population, the changing food habits of Indians and advances in medical science to deal with bird-specific diseases.
The Government has two, or rather three, options to deal with the situation. It can either remain a mute spectator or it can extend half-hearted support to the poultry sector. Or the Government can formulate a pragmatic policy to extend infrastructural, financial and other support to help the poultry sector grow at a faster pace and achieve its full potential. Moreover, encouraging the poultry sector also makes political sense for a government which is keen to keep the prices of the essential food items low.
It may not be possible for the Government to change the food habits of Indians but it can definitely do a lot to ensure an adequate supply of eggs and to keep the prices of poultry meat competitive. This will to some extent blunt the impact of the spiralling prices of some pulses which crossed the psychological mark of Rs 200 a kg.