Poultry farming in Queensland
Poultry farming continues to grow in Queensland with the industry worth a combined value of $915 million for egg and chicken meat production in 2021–22, up from $896 million in 2020–21.
The industry consists mainly of egg and chicken meat production, however small duck, emu and gamebird farms also operate in Queensland.
Read the latest AgTrends report for economic forecasts for the poultry industry in Queensland.
Queensland's egg production industry had a gross value of $285 million in 2021–22.
Most eggs sold in Queensland are whole shell eggs to the large retailers, but other markets include:
- wholesalers that supply the manufacturing, food service and catering sectors
- larger companies (e.g. egg suppliers and distributors)
- smaller retailers (e.g. small supermarket chains)
- direct to restaurants and food services
- public sales and markets.
Most egg production occurs predominantly in the Darling Downs region, however there are some farms in other areas of the state.
Production systems include caged, barn laid, free range and organic.
Chicken meat production in Queensland was valued at $630 million in 2021–22.
In Queensland, many meat chicken growers contract with large integrated processing companies and some small independent growers process and market their own chickens. If you're interested in contracting with a processing company, contact them directly to see if they are taking on new contract growers.
Most chicken meat production occurs within south-east Queensland. Production also occurs on the Darling Downs in the west and on the Atherton Tableland in the north.
Meat chicken production systems are either conventional, free range or organic. They are never grown in cages.
Starting a poultry farm
Contact your local council and the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries before:
- purchasing land for a new poultry farm
- diversifying into poultry on your current property
- expanding your current poultry operation.
You need to consider:
- market you will target and supply (e.g. under contract with a meat processor)
- selecting the right location
- development application process
- environmental management requirements
- production systems used (e.g. caged, shed/barn, free range)
- health, husbandry and welfare of the birds
- proximity to feed supply
- on-farm biosecurity measures.
The Queensland Farmers' Federation provides information about rural planning, legislation that affects primary producers and case studies from different industries.
If you are operating a poultry farm in Queensland, you must comply with state and national laws and regulations.
Research, development and extension
Poultry research funding is provided from many sources, including government and industry.
In Queensland, the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries:
- conducts environmental, poultry health and food safety research
- provides extension services for commercial poultry industries.
Industry associations and funding bodies
- AgriFutures Chicken Meat Program
- Australian Eggs Limited
- Poultry Hub Australia
- Egg Farmers of Australia (EFA)
- Australian Chicken Meat Federation (ACMF)
- Australian Chicken Growers Council (ACGC)
- Queensland Farmers' Federation (QFF)
- Last reviewed: 22 Nov 2022
- Last updated: 6 Apr 2023