Poultry production in Latin America has experienced a remarkable growth of more than 20% over the last decade. In 2022, total production reached 28.8 million tons, an unprecedented accomplishment for the region.
July 7th was a day of celebration for poultry farming in Latin America. During Latin American Chicken Day, the Latin American Poultry Farming Association (ALA, in Spanish) underscored the significance of this animal protein both for the sector and the region. The Latin American Chicken Institute (ILP), ALA’s arm to promote protein consumption, also joined the festivities, highlighting the sector’s progress.
Over the last decade, Latin American poultry farming has experienced remarkable growth. In 2022, overall production reached the all-time high of 28.8 million tons, a milestone that makes Latin America one of the main chicken producers worldwide, with almost 30% of the total. With almost 10 million tons above Europe’s 18.8 million tons production, Latin American poultry farming showcases its robustness and market leadership.
In terms of per capita consumption, each Latin American ate 39.4 kilos of chicken in 2022, almost twice the per capita consumption in Europe, which stood at 19.5 kilos, according to the Association of Poultry Processors and Poultry Trade in the European Union (AVEC). Most Latin American poultry production is for domestic consumption, meeting the demand of a population that values the quality and nutritional benefits of this protein.
But it is not only domestic consumption that has grown; Latin America has become an undisputed leader in global chicken exports. In 2022, the countries of the region exported 5.3 million tons, which represent almost 40% of chicken’s international trade. And the Chilean poultry industry has not been left behind; its commitment to high quality and food safety standards has been fundamental in maintaining consumer trust both at home and abroad.
“Chicken production in Latin America is a model for the world in quality, production efficiency, and sustainability. Our countries have both large producers and groups of consumers with some of the highest per capita consumption rates worldwide. Our diversity is our greatest strength, and it makes our productive chain one of the foundations for food security both for our people and many countries around the world,” said Joaquín Fernández, President of ALA, on Latin American Chicken Day.
Beyond production and trade figures, chicken also stands out for its nutritional value. According to Argentina’s Center for Nutritional Information on Chicken (CINCAP), 150 grams of skinless chicken contributes 52% of the daily protein requirements of an adult on a 2,000-calorie diet. It is also a relevant source of phosphorus and valuable vitamins and minerals, with low levels of fat and sodium. Its versatility and nutritional properties makes it a healthy choice at all stages of life, from childhood to old age, especially recommended for pregnant women, babies, and athletes.
According to figures from Chilean Customs, the country produced 687,000 ton cwe of chicken in 2022, a 2% increase from 2021.
208,000 ton cwe were exported in 2022, amounting to 540 million USD, 7% higher in volume and 19% lower in value compared to 2021.
“Latin American Chicken Day is an opportunity to celebrate poultry farming growth in our region and our country. The Chilean poultry industry stands out for its leadership in chicken production and its commitment to food safety and quality. We continue to be a global leader in both efficiency and sustainability,” concluded Juan Carlos Domínguez, president of ChileCarne.