By Our Staff Reporter
IMPHAL, May 12: Salai Agri Consortium Private Limited (SACPL) is successfully breeding Emus. With 270 adults and 80 chicks, the farm at Kangchup Sanjembam run by the SACPL is the largest in the State, said its secretary Takhellambam Tomba.
Speaking to The Sangai Express, Tomba said that the farm will soon begin supplying Emu for consumption. Emu meat will be available at Rs 500 per kilo. The Emu eggs will be sold at Rs 200 per egg, he said.
The farm was started in April 2017 under the aegis of chairman cum managing director of Salai Holdings Pvt Limited Narengbam Samarjit, he added.
About 400 emus were brought in via air in 2017. Some of the chicks died during transportation. Now there are 270 adult Emus and 80 newly hatched chicks in the farm, Tomba said.
The emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) is the second-largest living bird by height, after its ratite relative, the ostrich. It is endemic to Australia, but is known to survive in all climate.
Emu grows to be between 5 and 6 feet tall weighing 45 to 60 kgs.
On an average during breeding period (October to March), female emu lays up to 32 eggs. Emu’s eggs are dark green in colour. Compared to the egg of a hen they are 10-12 times bigger. Female emu may lay eggs after every 3-5 days.
Emu has a long life and lives at least for 40 years.
After an emu chick is hatched, the male emu also takes active care of its baby, said Tomba. The farm now has emu weighing about 32 kgs. In International market, emu feeds are sold at Rs 1,200 to Rs 1,500 per kg, he said and added that Salai Agri Consortium had showcased the emus successfully during the Sangai Festival 2018. The consortium has not yet decided when the emus will be marketed for human consumption, but it has plans in place. However, people can buy emu chicks from the farm at Rs 9,000 per two chicks, he said.
Emu meat has low cholesterol content and its skin can be used in making leather bags, he added.