Irish people are consuming 6% more poultry than they were in 2014 and the meat is growing in popularity according to Peter Duggan, Poultry Specialist at Bord Bia.

Irish consumers are also buying poultry more frequently, he said.

Following the International Agency for Research on Cancer’s (IARC) report finding that red meat was ‘probably carcinogenic to humans’ there was negative publicity – where white meat, such as poultry, benefited he said.

“There’s been a growth in production and consumption forecast and poultry has been growing in popularity since 2010.”

Looking at the EU, he said that broiler prices were 2% lower in 2015 compared to the year previous and there’s been a year-on-year increase in poultry production since 2010.

“Poultry production is expected to grow by almost 1% (0.7%) in 2016 and that going forward, avian influenza will be unpredictable.”

In December of 2015, a Rabobank report stated that the threat of avian influenza remains a real ‘wild card’ which has the potential to impact supply, trade and consumer demand in 2016.

In the second half of 2016, market conditions will be affected by avian influenza -related import restrictions on breeding stock in countries like China and Thailand from the US and Europe, according to the report.

This will lead to lower production in these countries, which are expected to affect potentially global poultry markets, it found.

However, it also said that fundamentals for the global poultry outlook for next year are positive.