Maize-poultry value chains in India: Implications for research and development

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Published in Journal of New Seeds 10: 245-263

Maize-poultry value chains in India: Implications for research and development

Jon Hellin, Olaf Erenstein

Rapid growth of the poultry industry in India has caused an increased demand for maize (Zea mays L.). Poultry feed contains 60-65% of maize and approximately 50% of India’s annual maize harvest of 19 million tons is used for poultry feed. This article reports on a qualitative study of maize-poultry value chains. It identifies bottlenecks in the value chains and highlights some of the impediments to the uptake of quality-protein maize (QPM; maize with elevated levels of the essential amino acids lysine and tryptophan), which is being heavily promoted by Indian maize breeders. Further research is needed to produce QPM varieties that outperform normal maize varieties and to work more closely with the poultry industry so that QPM value chains become more demand than supply-driven.

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