The country’s first emu processing unit will be coming up at Nuziveedu in Krishna district of Andhra Pradesh by April 2012, said Sanjay Bhoosreddy, joint secretary (department of animal husbandry, dairy and fisheries), Union ministry of agriculture.
“We have received an application from Vijayawada-based Vileena Emu Processing Private Limited for backend subsidy. We will consider providing the same either through Nabard’s Poultry Venture Capital Fund or through the Establishment and Modernisation of Slaughterhouse Scheme at a meeting on November 25,” he told Business Standard on the sidelines of Poultry India 2011 here on Wednesday.
The Poultry Venture Capital Fund was floated in 2010 with a budgetary allocation of Rs 20 crore for the current financial year. The fund supports small farmers and unemployed youth in establishing poultry breeding farms with low-input technology birds and also for creating the necessary infrastructure facilities. The fund provides backend subsidy of 25 per cent, except for technology upgradation, with the subsidy being 33 per cent for SC/ST and farmers from northeast India.
According to B Srinivas Rao, managing director, Vileena Emu Processing, construction of the unit on 22 acre is under way, entailing an investment of Rs 18 crore in Phase-I and Rs 10 crore in Phase-II.
“The unit will have an installed processing capacity of 300 birds per day. Trial run, with 80 birds a day, will be completed by March 2012, and we expect to commence commercial production from April,” he said.
The population of emu, the second largest flightless bird under the ratite group, is around 1 million in India, with Andhra Pradesh, especially Krishna, Guntur and West Godavari districts, accounting for 40 per cent of this. There is almost 100 per cent utilisation of emu, which weighs 40 kg (fat 10 kg, meat 15 kg, hide 8 kg and feathers).
“The unit will offer farmers Rs 12,600 per bird and will market processed meat (raw, chilled and frozen) for Rs 800 a kg,” Rao said, adding the company was planning to start an emu processing unit in Maharashtra, on a small-scale though, in 2014.
As part of the 11th Five-Year Plan, Boosreddy said his department had started Poultry Estates in Sikkim and Orissa on 10 acre and 25 acre respectively last year to promote broiler and layer farming and setting up of feed plants, warehouses and packaging units.
“If these pilot estates taste success, we will replicate this initiative to agro-climatic zones in bigger states like Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Karnataka in the first year of the 12th Plan,” he said.