Government targets for ammonia emission and for N and P loss per hectare (ha) of agricultural land were used to assess carrying capacity for poultry production in The Netherlands with data from 1990. In addition, the effect of alternative management strategies on carrying capacity was determined. Ammonia emission from poultry production in 1990 [20.5 gigagrams (Gg) N] exceeded the target for 2000 (i.e., 6.9 Gg N). Targets defined for 2000 and 2010 (i.e., 4.6 Gg N) can be achieved, however, without reducing poultry numbers, assuming national introduction of measurements studied. Measures that reduced ammonia emission directly, i.e., introduction of low-emission housing or manure application techniques, were most effective. In 1990, N and P losses equalled 215 kg/ha for N and 31 kg/ha for P. The N loss was slightly lower than the target for 2000 (219 kg N/ha) but exceeded the target for 2010 (144 kg N/ha). Reduction of application of artificial N fertilizer, however, reduced N loss effectively from 215 to 22 kg/ha. National P loss in 1990 exceeded the target for 2000 (15.3 kg P/ha). Reduction of application of artificial P fertilizer reduced P loss most effectively from 31 to 14 kg/ha. To achieve the target for 2010 (8.7 kg P/ha), additional reduction in P excretion by poultry is required. This reduction can be achieved by use of phytase in layer and br oiler feed and by use of a coarse Ca source in layer feed. Unlike pig production, carrying capacity for poultry production in The Netherlands is not limited by governmental targets for acidification, eutrophication, or drinking water contamination.