Is poultry farming a profitable business? This is one of the frequently asked questions about the livestock business. But most people don’t know that poultry farming in Nigeria is a gold mine that’s yet to be fully exploited.
With over 200 million population in the country, you don’t need a soothsayer to know that poultry farming is a lucrative business. Interestingly, if you have the right strategy in place, poultry farming is a good business to start.
So, if you are looking for information about poultry farming for beginners, you will find this article interesting.
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What is Poultry Farming?
Before I answer the question “is poultry farming a profitable business”? Let me quickly explain poultry farming to you.
Poultry farming involves raising birds like chickens, turkeys, ducks, geese mainly for their meats and eggs. When managed correctly, poultry farming in Nigeria is one of the most viable agricultural business ideas.
Surprisingly, it’s easy to start a poultry farm. It doesn’t require much capital. You can always start small and expand it later. You can even start this business in your home if you have enough space.
Is Poultry Farming a Profitable Business In Nigeria?
Yes! Poultry farming is a profitable business in Nigeria. The market for livestock in Nigeria is large. And you can take advantage of the large market if you are strategic in your approach.
In 2017, This Day Newspaper revealed that the Nigerian Poultry Industry is worth over 1.2tn. 1.2 trillion naira? Wow! Indeed, domestic birds farming is a goldmine.
Let me surprise you with another shocking statistic. Do you know that Africa’s egg industry grows by 3.9% annually? And Nigeria is the biggest market for eggs for sub-Saharan Africa.
Don’t forget that egg is a product of poultry. You see! If you are business-minded, you will make it big if you start poultry farming in Nigeria.
Furthermore, the Nigerian government has been making regulations to encourage poultry farming business. For instance, in 2003, the federal government banned the importation of chicken in Nigeria. However, one day old live chickens are exempted from the regulation.
From what you have read so far, the answer to the question – is poultry farming a profitable business is Yes. However, it’s not a get rich quick scheme. It will help if you put in commitment and a level of hard work.
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How Profitable is Broiler Farming in Nigeria?
Poultry farming is a general term that covers the rearing of domestic birds, including broilers. It’s normal for you to ask how profitable is broiler farming in Nigeria before you start it.
Let me tell you something; broiler farming is one of the most lucrative aspects of poultry farming business. Their demands are high, and it’s relatively cheaper to train broilers than other domestic birds.
On average, it costs about N1,509 to nurture a broiler bird to maturity. This includes the cost of getting the chick, feeding, treatments, and other unplanned expenses.
Again, try to be strategic with your poultry farming business. Always target the sales of your broilers and other birds towards the peak period. The peak period for the sales of domestic birds is; Christmas, New year, Easter, Sallah, etc.
During these periods, the demand for poultry birds is very high. And if you understand the interplay of the law of demand and supply, you will know that price will increase.
You could even sell a broiler as high as N4000 to N5000. Do the Maths, if you are selling a broiler that costs you about N1,509 (Including the cost of buying the chick) to nurture at N4000, that’s profitable, isn’t it?
I think I have provided a good answer to the question “is poultry farming a profitable business”. From what I said so far, you can see that if you are strategic in your approach, poultry is a profitable business.
How To Increase The Profitability of Broiler Production
Like I promised earlier, this article will provide you with all the information you need about poultry farming for beginners.
One of the reasons my answer to the question “is poultry farming a profitable business” is yes, is because I understand that with the right strategy, you will ‘cash-out’ real-time doing this business.
If you are new to poultry farming, here are some tips on how to increase your profitability.
#1. Don’t Waste Your Feed
One of the mistakes poultry farmers make is not doing anything about feed waste. You may think that feed doesn’t cost much. But if you calculate the accumulated waste over time, you will be shocked.
Ensure you invest in high quality feeds. Pay attention to quality instead of quantity. As a rule, don’t stockpile feed. Stockpiling feed encourages waste, and you may end up spending more than necessary.
#2. Don’t Use one Feed For All Breed of Broilers
I know this may sound strange to you. But it’s not advisable to use one feed for all broilers. Times are changing, and there are a series of developments in the poultry business.
For instance, there are new breeds of broilers that consume less feed and grow faster. If you are rearing these birds, you must give them their specific meals. Otherwise, they may end up eating more without growing fast.
Do you understand what I just explained? In a nutshell, broilers that grow faster and eat less, have their feed. If you aren’t feeding them with it, they will not grow as expected.
#3. Use Low-Cost Ingredients
Don’t allow anybody to deceive you. Feeding your broilers with high-cost ingredients won’t change anything. Discuss with people who are currently into poultry farming; they will be able to guide you accordingly.
#4. Be Strategic in Your Approach
There’s no way your poultry farming business will be profitable if you aren’t strategic about it. Always target the sales of your birds towards major festive periods like Sallah, Easter, Christmas, New year, etc.
How to Start a Poultry Farm in Nigeria
Now that you have the answer to the question “is poultry farming a profitable business in Nigeria, I think it would be nice to understand how to start a poultry farm.
But your poultry farming business can’t succeed if you don’t have a positive mindset and the skills. Even though poultry farming business has growth potential, you need to learn the skills. And understand the best way to care for the birds you are rearing.
Here is a step by step process to start a poultry farm;
#1. Choose the Type of Poultry Bird You Want to Rear
Before you start a poultry farming business, you need to decide on the type of bird you want to rear. You can either rear birds for their meats or eggs.
Generally, most poultry farmers in Nigeria rear one of the following domestic birds;
Layers: If you are starting a poultry business because of commercial eggs production, you should consider layers.
You can start rearing layers when they are one day old. Interestingly, they start laying eggs when they are about 18 to 19 years old. They will continue laying eggs till 72 to 78 weeks.
Layer poultry farming in Nigeria is lucrative, and the market is large. After all, almost every household in Nigeria consumes eggs. The market is endless, and if you are strategic about it, you will earn a fortune from layer poultry farming.
Broilers: Broiler production is one of the most profitable aspects of poultry farming in Nigeria. It involves rearing young males and female chicks for meat. Interestingly, when you manage your broilers very well, they could grow from 40 g (Hatch weight) to about 1.2 to 2kg within 6 weeks.
Cockerels: Unlike broilers and layers, cockerels can easily survive in any environment. You can also sell them as meat. But they don’t grow as fast as broilers. They cost more to rear, but their demand is high in the Nigerian market.
If you have the means, you should consider rearing more than one type of bird. You can consider raising layers and broilers. But if you have limited resources, you can start with broilers, and add layers later.
#2. Select a Location for the Farm
Once you decide on the type of bird to rear, the next step is to choose a location. Sometimes, the location you site your poultry farm could contribute to its success or otherwise.
Ideally, you should get a piece of land and build a spacious cage for your birds. The size of the land depends on the number of birds you want to rear.
However, if you don’t have the resources to buy land, you can build a space at the back of your house.
By asking the question “is poultry farming a profitable business in Nigeria?” It’s obvious you are a bit new to the business. Therefore, try to start small, learn from your mistakes, and expand as time goes on.
Factors to Consider When Selecting a location for Your Poultry Farming Business in Nigeria
You don’t just choose a location for your poultry business. It’s important to make your decision based on certain factors. Some of them are;
- Nearness to neighbouring residence: Your poultry farm should be a bit far from a neighbouring residence. Of course, it shouldn’t be too far so that people can come and patronize you.
- The prevailing wind direction in the neighbourhood
- Nearness to an adequate source of water
- Easy access to land for manure application
#3. Provide Good Housing and Shelter for the Birds
The housing of your poultry birds is as important as the poultry farm itself. I hope you understand the previous statement? What I mean is that your poultry birds can’t survive if you don’t provide good housing and shelter for them.
There are different housing designs you can construct for your birds, depending on the breeds. For instance, the housing design of a layers’ poultry farm is different from that of a broiler.
So, please do your research, discuss with experienced poultry farmers, they should be able to advise you on what to do.
#4. Feeding and Medication Plans
Before you start your poultry farming business, you need to have a feeding and medication plan for your birds. Generally, poultry birds are prone to infections. So, always feed them with nutritious, net, and dry food.
It’s not advisable to buy poultry birds’ feeds in bulk. They need fresh food to survive. So, please give them a good meal and medication.
However, try as much as possible to avoid waste. Remember, the lower your cost of nurturing a bird, the higher the profit.
#5. Marketing and Sales Strategy
The previous points were the operational aspect of poultry farming. And here’s a big deal. I’m sure you aren’t rearing your birds to give people for charity. I don’t think so.
Try to have a marketing and sales strategy in place for your poultry business. That’s what will differentiate you from the crowd.
Like every other poultry farmer, you hope to get good sales after the harvest. Don’t you? But you can’t achieve this if you are doing the same thing every other person is doing.
Instead of taking your birds or eggs to the market to sell like every other person, you can use a different approach. Here’s how to market your poultry farm products;
Build a strong online presence for your poultry farm
We are in the digital age. And you can add a touch of digital marketing to your poultry business. Build a brand around your poultry business online. Have a website, social media pages, and invest in digital advertising.
I know what you are thinking. It will increase your operational cost. That’s true, but in the long run, it will give you an edge over other people in the industry.
You can even have an option where people can order online on your website. Or let them know on your social media pages that you do home delivery.
Let me quickly tell you a story about my friend Ola.
Ola and I did NYSC together. He studied Agriculture related courses. But he told me he was going to start a poultry farm after our NYSC in 2015. I didn’t take him seriously; I thought he was joking.
But he wasn’t, he started a poultry farm immediately after we finished our service. Guess what? Ola is doing very well. He digitized his poultry farming business, and he has become one of the biggest poultry farmers in his state.
You can be Ola! Start something little today; someone may use your success story as a testimony tomorrow.
Market Your Products Directly to Hotels and Restaurants
Don’t wait for people to come to you. Create a market and separate yourself from the crowd. It’s easy. Identify major hotels, fast foods, and restaurants close to you, and offer to supply them chicken.
Advertise Your Products
You can also market your poultry products by advertising them. Contact popular influencers on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. They will charge you, but the result will be worth it.
Employ a Marketer
If your poultry business is already doing well, try to employ a marketer to carry out aggressive marketing. While you focus on the operational aspect of the business, the marketer will help you bring sales.
How Much Does It Cost to Start a Poultry Farm in Nigeria?
Starting a poultry farm in Nigeria is relatively cheap. It doesn’t require much capital. With as low as N50,000, you can start up something. This includes the cost of setting up a shelter for your birds as well as buying a day old chick.
Interestingly, if you manage your poultry farm properly, you can get a 100% return from your capital. But you need to be consistent with nurturing your birds. Give them attention and shelter them in a neat environment.
Layers vs Broilers, Which is More Profitable?
Beginners to poultry farming always want to know between layers and broilers, which is more profitable. Even though they already get the answer to the question “is poultry farming a profitable business”, they still want to know which birds would be better for them.
Broilers and layers are two types of poultry birds. They are reared for meat production. These birds grow very fast because of their strong genes. Within a few weeks, you can start selling your broiler birds.
Layer birds, on the other hand, are reared for commercial egg production. Although they don’t grow fast like broilers, they have genes that enable them to lay more eggs.
The question now is between layer and broiler poultry farming, which is more profitable? Well, the answer to this question depends on certain factors which include;
Generally, it’s cost more to start up a layer of poultry farming in Nigeria compared to broilers. Unlike layers, within seven weeks, you can start selling your broilers and make your profit.
It’s generally easier to market layers than broilers. You can market the eggs your layers produce or store them if there’s no market for them. Broilers, on the other hand, aren’t easy to market.
Long term Revenue
While broilers only produce meat, layers produce both meat and eggs. After producing eggs in commercial quantity, you can decide to sell your layers for meat.
Generally, both broilers and layers are profitable. But if you aren’t looking for a quick turn over on your capital, I think layers are more profitable in the long run.