Too many broilers in Malaysia

Malaysia reaches record totals in broiler production.

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Chicks placed for commercial broiler production in peninsular Malaysia last year are expected to total 479.85 million. This will be nearly 4% higher than the 461.96m placed in 2005, which showed a 6% increase over 2004. Actual broiler production in 2005 amounted to some 437.05 million, and it looks as though this figure will rise to 452.8m for last year.

The country has 29 broiler parent stock companies with annual day-old capacities ranging from 1.35 million to 114.75m. The parent flock was assessed in 2005 at 4.36m on 70 farms. The past three years have witnessed a decline in the parent flock from the 2003 level of almost 4.57m. However, placements of day-old female parents in 2005 at 3.63m were up by more than 9%, while the forecast for 2006 shows a further expansion to a new high of 4.29m.

During 2005, the average cost of production per kilogramme was about 3.27 Malaysian Ringgit (MYR; 1MYR = US$0.28), while the average return was MYR3.79/kg.

Of the near 480m broiler day-olds placed on farms in 2006, some 55% came from integrators, a decrease of almost 5% on the year.

While total broiler production will approach 453m for last year, output ranges from 8.27m to 8.76m on a weekly basis. During 2005, some 37.7m live broilers were exported along with 2590 tonnes (t) of broilermeat.

Although imports of chicken meat in 2005 at 1926t showed an increase of 2%, they were well down on the levels between 2001 and 2003 when the annual total ranged between 18,900t and 25,700t. Of the total in 2005, some 1456t was mechanically deboned meat. Over 88% of imports came from Denmark

The country had 15 Veterinary Health Mark (VHM)-certified slaughter plants in 2005 and they handled just under 79 million birds or 18% of the total. Both the number of birds and the proportion of the flock passing through these VHM plants have risen gradually since 2000.

2005 was a good one for the industry, partly because the government approved a higher ex-farm ceiling price for broilers of MYR4.00/kg in October 2004. The ex-farm price last year must average above MYR3.00/kg in order for production to remain viable.

Although the country was declared free of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in June 2006, an earlier outbreak in February/March had a negative impact on demand, and some observers consider that production might have to be scaled down to keep the market in balance.

Good year for coloured broilers

The production of coloured broilers, having risen rapidly from around 20 million in 2000 to a peak of almost 43m in 2003, has since declined a little to the 2005 level of 39.1m. For 2006, the forecast is for a further slight cutback to around 38.4m.

There were 18 breeding companies handling this stock in 2005. The parent flock totalled 324,000, which was almost 14% down on the preceding year.

Ex-farm prices for these birds ranged from MYR4.00 to MYR6.50/kg, while production costs varied between MYR3.91 and MYR4.61/kg. Domestic demand for these birds is expected to continue and with a slight reduction in supplies, ex-farm prices were expected to hold up for 2006.

Meat ducks cut back

Peninsular Malaysia had 10 meat duck breeding companies operating 28 farms in 2005, and there were some 145 commercial meat duck farms.

Meat duck production amounted to 31.36 million but the forecast for 2006 was just 22.14m, reflecting the fact that 2005 was not a good year financially. Ex-farm prices were around MYR3.40/kg liveweight against production costs ranging from MYR3.18 to MYR3.53.

The number of female parents in July 2005 was 271,000, which compares with 304,000 in the previous year and a high of 360,000 in 2003. The placement of day-old female parents has contracted sharply from 309,400 in 2002 to just 152,100 in 2005.

Looking back over the past six years, production of ducks increased sharply from 21.7 million in 2000 to 35.7m in 2003 but it has since slipped back to 34.5m in 2004 and 31.4m in 2005. Disappointing returns have resulted in a projected 29% drop in the output of day-olds during 2006 to 22.8m, while production of meat ducks is likely to have fallen back to 22.1m. Even so, the industry is not confident of a good year. Exports of live ducks to Singapore in 2005 jumped by 52% to 6.54 million.


An 11% cutback in hen egg output was envisaged for 2006, at around 6582 million.

Although costs are expected to have increased a little, the cut in production is likely to lead to higher ex-farm prices maintaining industry profitability.

There were eight layer breeding companies and the female layer parent flock in 2005 stood at 397,500, down from 473,000 in 2004 and almost 537,000 in 2003. Day-old pullet production came close to 28.5 million.

Although egg output increased by 8% from 2004 to 7421 million eggs, the annual average traded ex-farm price was up by almost 3% to MYR22.92 cents/egg. The average production cost was about MYR22.16 cents/egg.

During the year, egg exports mainly to Singapore rose by 21% to 866.4 million eggs.

There are four egg processing plants producing pasteurised liquid whole egg, liquid white and liquid yolk.

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