Emu Farming Takes Off In Favourable Climate Of Gujarat

GUJARAT - Bird able to adjust well with climate in arid regions of State; reason for thriving business is increasing demand for bird’s meat, oil
calendar icon 10 September 2007
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>Emu: a peck above the rest

Ahmedabad, September 9: Far from its native habitat in Australia, the flightless emu is leaving its footprint across the plains of India, with an increasing number of farmers commercially rearing the ostrich-size bird.

From a single farm in 1996, there are today 900 emu farms in 14 states, with a majority of them in Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra, Bhadresh L Mehta, founder of the Emu Farmers Association, said.

Mehta, who is based in Pune, said he plans to expand his business to Gujarat and Rajasthan. “Emus are tough and sturdy and are used to extreme climates as they come from the open country of Australia,” he said.

The country’s first commercial emu farm was started in1996 by an NRI named Mutiyala but it soon closed down.

Mutiyala left for the US within months of starting his project because of the poor response.

The reason for the growth of emu farms today is the increasing demand for the bird’s meat and oil, which is believed to have medicinal properties, especially for treating joint pains, Mehta said.

The 1.5-metre high birds, which weigh approximately 60 kg, would have no problem adjusting to the arid regions of Gujarat and Rajasthan, he pointed out. Though the emu’s meat and oil are very expensive, setting up a farm is not a costly proposition, said Jignesh B Sethia, owner of Pioneer emu Management and Products.

Source: ExpressIndia
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