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India has the world’s largest livestock population accounting for over 37.28 per cent of cattle, 21.23 per cent of buffalo, 26.40 per cent of goats and 12.17 per cent of sheep. The study examined the growth and export dimension of livestock sector in India, the factors affecting livestock output and the trends, performance and determinants of the livestock sector in India. Secondary data for years (1951 to 2016-17) were collected. Besides, Regression analysis, the Markov Chain analysis and Coppock’s Index were computed to achieve the stipulated objectives. The results revealed that India’s total livestock population increased from 289.4 million in 1951 to 529.70 million in 2007 but plummeted to 512.06 million in 2012, while total poultry population increased consistently from 73.5 million in 1951 to 729.21 million in 2012.
In livestock composition, the ovine share was increased but the bovine share was decreased. Buffalo, goat and pig share in livestock population was increased but the cow, cattle and sheep share to total livestock population was decreased. The instability was observed to be highest in poultry, remaining livestock animals also shows instability in its population growth. India’s milk, meat, egg and wool production increased at the rate of 4.18, 2.74, 6.02 and 0.81 per cent per annum respectively during the study period. In India production of milk increased rapidly after the year 1970 while production of meat and egg increased rapidly after the year 1980. In past India’s trade balance for livestock and livestock products was deficient, now it has been shifted to a positive balance.
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