Livestock and Poultry in India : Overview

Livestock production and agriculture are intrinsically linked to each other, and both crucial for overall food security. Livestock sector is an important livelihood activity for most of the farmers. Marginal, small and semi-medium farmers with average operational holdings of area less than 4 ha own about 87.7% of the livestock of this country. India has vast resource of livestock and poultry about 65.1 million sheep, 135.1 million goats and about 10.3 million pigs as per 19th Livestock census. This plays a vital role in improving the socio-economic conditions of rural masses.

Table: Livestock and Poultry Production in India 

Species Livestock Census 2007 (no in millions) Livestock Census 2012 (no in millions) Growth Rate
Cattle 199.1 190.9 -4.10
Buffalo 105.3 108.7 3.19
Sheep 71.6 65.1 -9.07
Goat 140.5 135.1 -3.82
Pigs 11.1 10.3 -7.54
Poultry 648.8 729.2 12.39

The total livestock population consisting of Cattle, Buffalo, Sheep, Goat, pig, Horses & Ponies, Mules, Donkeys, Camels, Mithun and Yak in the country is 512.05 million numbers in 2012. The total livestock population has decreased by about 3.33% over the previous census.

Livestock population has increased substantially in Gujarat (15.36%), Uttar Pradesh (14.01%), Assam (10.77%), Punjab (9.57%) Bihar (8.56%); Sikkim (7.96%), Meghalaya (7.41%), and Chhattisgarh (4.34%). 

India continues to be the largest producer of milk in world. As a result of several measures to increase the productivity of livestock, milk production has significantly increased by about 25 % from the level of 102.6 million tonnes at the end of the tenth plan to 127.9 million tonnes at the end of the eleventh plan in 2011-12.

Poultry sector is now in current state where commercial production is the norm of the day with a number of technologies intervention. The total egg production during the end of the tenth five year plan was about 51 billion. By the end of 2011-12, the total production increased by 37 % to about 70 million.

Wool production in 2012-13 was 46 million kgs with a growth rate about 3 %.The average yield of wool per season at national level from different category of sheep during 2012-13 is 1.09 kg/season from rams, 0.73 kg/season from ewes, 0.42 kg/season from lambs. 

Meat production in 2012-13 was 5.95 million tonnes. The annual growth rate for production of meat is 7.87 % in 2012-13.


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