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Day 81 – Q 5. Which are the major meat producing and processing regions of the world? What are the factors attributed to this pattern? Analyse.

5. Which are the major meat producing and processing regions of the world? What are the factors attributed to this pattern? Analyse.

 विश्व के प्रमुख मांस उत्पादन और प्रसंस्करण क्षेत्र कौन से हैं? इस पैटर्न के लिए कौन से कारक जिम्मेदार हैं? विश्लेषण करें।


Meat is an important source of nutrition for many people around the world. Global demand for meat is growing: over the past 50 years, meat production has more than quadrupled. The world now produces more than 320 million tonnes each year. This growth reflects not only increasing demand for meat as global incomes have risen, but also improved efficiencies in production, processing and transportation declining real feed prices.


  • Livestock and meat products have been among the fastest growing components of the global agriculture and food industry. Overall world meat production increased by 1.25% to 323 Mt in 2017, with moderate increases in the production of bovine and poultry meats and more modest gains in pig and sheep meat. 
  • Regionally, Asia is the largest meat producer, accounting for around 40-45 percent of total meat production. This regional distribution has changed significantly in recent decades. In 1961, Europe and North America were the dominant meat producers, accounting for 42 and 25 percent, respectively. In 1961, Asia produced only 12 percent. By 2013, Europe and North America’s share had fallen to 19 and 15 percent, respectively.
  • This reduction in production share was despite a large increase in production in absolute terms: Europe’s meat output has approximately doubled over this period, whilst North American output has increased 2.5-fold. Production increases in Asia, however, have been staggering: meat production has increased 15-fold since 1961.
  • Meat production continues to be dominated by Brazil, China, the European Union, the Russian Federation, and the United States.
  • Meat production in China, the world’s largest meat producer, increased little overall mainly because of the several Avian Influenza (AI) outbreaks affected the country. Nevertheless, China remained the second largest contributor to the 2017 increase in meat production. 
  • Only 9.7 percent of the meat produced in the world is traded. Much of it is grown by small producers and stays within the region. In 2018, Brazil was the world’s largest exporter of beef, providing close to 20 percent of total global beef exports, outpacing India, the second-largest exporter.
  • Traditionally, meat processing is a means of extending shelf-life (preserving) and producing a convenient item for use later and elsewhere. In modern times, meat is processed not only as a means of preserving, but also for producing consumer-acceptable products compatible with modern lifestyles and philosophy of a health-related quality of life.
  • Meat processing coproducts are a rich source of proteins, many possessing high nutritional value as well as techno functional and bioactive properties of interest. Large volumes are generated per slaughtered animal, the majority directed to uses other than human consumption. 
  • The world’s livestock sector is growing at an unprecedented rate and the driving force behind this enormous surge is a combination of population growth, rising incomes and urbanization.
  • There is a strong positive relationship between the level of income and the consumption of animal protein, with the consumption of meat, milk and eggs increasing at the expense of staple foods. 
  • Because of the recent steep decline in prices, developing countries are embarking on higher meat consumption at much lower levels of gross domestic product than the industrialized countries did some 20-30 years ago. 
  • Urbanization is a major driving force influencing global demand for livestock products. Urbanization stimulates improvements in infrastructure, including cold chains, which permit trade in perishable goods. 
  • Compared with the less diversified diets of the rural communities, city dwellers have a varied diet rich in animal proteins and fats, and characterized by higher consumption of meat, poultry, milk and other dairy products. 
  • There has been a remarkable increase in the consumption of animal products in countries such as Brazil and China, although the levels are still well below the levels of consumption in North American and most other industrialized countries.
  • As diets become richer and more diverse, the high-value protein that the livestock sector offers improves the nutrition of the vast majority of the world. Livestock products not only provide high-value protein but are also important sources of a wide range of essential micronutrients, in particular minerals such as iron and zinc, and vitamins such as vitamin A. 
  • For the large majority of people in the world, particularly in developing countries, livestock products remain a desired food for nutritional value and taste. Excessive consumption of animal products in some countries and social classes can, however, lead to excessive intakes of fat.


Meat production is an important part of the world economy with important contributions to local, national, and international trade. There may be multiple paths to the future of meat production but addressing its global footprint on climate change becomes important in light of the SDG’s to be achieved  by 2030.

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