Alltech’s Annual Survey Finds First Production Decline in Nine Years

( Alltech )

Alltech has released the results of its 2020 Alltech Global Feed Survey, which found that international feed tonnage decreased by 1.07% to 1.26 billion metric tons of feed produced last year, according to a release from the company. It asserts that this was due largely to African swine fever (ASF) and the decline of pig feed in the Asia-Pacific region. It is the first time in the nine years that the company has conducted the survey that there has been a decline.

The data, which was collected from 145 countries and almost 30,000 feed mills indicates that the top nine feed producing countries produce 58% of the world’s feed production and contain 57% of the world’s feed mills, so they ca be viewed as an indicator of overall trends in agriculture, the release states. These countries are: the U.S., China, Brazil, Russia, India, Mexico, Spain, Japan and Germany.

The results were presented via livestream from the company’s headquarters by Dr. Mark Lyons, president and CEO of Alltech, who also hosted a panel discussion with key industry leaders and Alltech executives.

When it comes to the impact of ASF, food futurist and panelist Jack Bobo, CEO of Futurity, thinks China may have an opportunity arising from its current challenge.

“I think ASF presents a challenge but also an opportunity. Ninety-eight percent of Chinese farmers have 50 pigs or less so when they come back, it will look very different. There’s an opportunity to leapfrog some of the technologies that other countries have used, and they may come back stronger and with new and more efficient technologies,” he says.

In terms of feed production by species, the survey found that the largest segment was broilers with 28%, followed by pigs at 24%, layers with 14%; dairy at 12%; beef at 10%; other species 6%; aquaculture 4%; and pets 2%. Predominant growth came from the layer, broiler, aqua and pet feed sectors, the release says.

Results by species:

Pig feed production was greatly impacted by ASF, with an 11% decrease. The primary producing region for pig feed remains Asia-Pacific, but it also experienced the largest decline of 26%, with China (-35%), Cambodia (-22%), Vietnam (-21%) and Thailand (-16%) experiencing large decreases, the results show.

Europe, North America and Latin America remained relatively stable compared to last year, within a percentage point’s worth of gain or loss. While Africa is a small region from a tonnage standpoint for pig feed, it showed a large increase of 29%, the release notes. 

In the poultry sector, Asia-Pacific is the leader in both broiler (115.2 MMT) and layer (73.1 MMT) feed. In Latin America, total broiler production amounted to 60.8 MMT, with Brazil leading the region with 32.1 MMT followed by Mexico with 10.5 MMT, while Mexico’s layer feed production increased by 11% to 7.05 MMT and surpassed Brazil, according to the release. Russia leads Europe with 10.86 MMT of the total region’s 56.3 MMT of broiler feed and 5.3 MMT of the region’s total of 33.5 MMT of layer feed. In North America, the U.S. accounts for 94% of the broiler feed with 48.5 MMT, while layer feed in Canada increased by 460,000 metric tons.

Global dairy feed production is led by Europe with 34% followed by North America (21.8%), Asia-Pacific (17.6%) and Latin America (15.3%). The top dairy feed-producing countries are Turkey (6.5 MMT), Germany (5.2 MMT), Russia (4.2 MMT), the U.K. (3.8 MMT), France (3.4 MMT), the Netherlands (3.3. MMT) and Spain (3.2 MMT), the survey shows.

North America continues to lead global beef feed production with 62.3 MMT, followed by Europe (21.9 MMT) and Latin America (13.9 MMT). For the 2020 Alltech Global Feed Survey, the beef feed production estimation was recalculated to improve its accuracy. The new estimate takes into account the average days on feed and intake as a percentage of body weight in the feedlot. Last year’s estimation was also recalculated to reflect this formula change for a proper year-on-year comparison, the release notes.

Aquaculture feeds showed growth of 4% over last year. Per ton, Asia-Pacific grew the most with an additional 1.5 MMT. The primary contributors were China, Vietnam and Bangladesh. Europe’s decrease is in large part due to decreased feed production in Russia, which is primarily due to an increase in imports, the release notes.

The pet food sector saw growth of 4% with the largest tonnage increases in Asia-Pacific (10%), Europe (3%) and Latin America (6%). By country, increases were seen in China, Indonesia, Portugal, Hungary, Ecuador and Argentina.

For more information, including a recording of the panel discussion and survey results broken out by region, visit