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LAHORE: Pakistan continues to suffer protein deficiency of 11.98 grams in each adult, creating a huge gap of 776,304 tonnes per annum.

Poultry experts say since it is becoming difficult gradually to fill such a huge gap and concentrated efforts should be made to meet the protein deficiency of younger generations in the country, especially the primary schoolchildren.

“Since the country’s population suffers from two forms of deficiencies–under-nutrition and malnutrition–the availability of protein requirement in Pakistan is only 6.4 grams/capita/day for adults against the 45.92 grams/day, creating a gap of 11.98 grams which turns into a gap of 776,304 tons/annum,” said Pakistan Poultry Association Founder Chairman Khalil Sattar.

He added that malnutrition was of a more serious nature, which arose from lack of adequate intake of quality animal protein. The National Science Council of Pakistan too realised the fact this form of protein deficiency caused lower energy output, lower industrial and agricultural production, decreased resistance to diseases and high mortality and death rate in the children.

According to the United Nations Food & Agriculture Organisation (FAO), the average protein requirement of adults is 45.92 grams/day. Animal protein requirement being 40pc, it should be 18.38 grams, whereas its availability in Pakistan is only 6.4 grams/capita/day.

“We have to determine the most economical and cost-effective sources of animal protein. And the Poultry is the only way forward to fill in the animal protein gap,” Mr Sattar explained.

Published in Dawn, September 5th, 2018