How Profitable is chicken farming in Kenya?

Poultry farming is one of the most profitable agri-business in Kenya. You will find it practised all over the country. Chicken products have high demand across all the social-economic groups. The region supports various forms of poultry like turkey, ducks and guinea fowls, its chicken that is farmer and consumers best choice.

According to the census 2019 results, there are 38.82 million chickens. Most of them, 30.32 million birds, are the indigenous types. The rest are exotic types raised for commercial purpose. The layers are more than the broilers at 5.58 million birds compared to 2.91 million birds.

The mainstream and social media have many success stories of poultry farmers. It attracts many beginner farmers to try their hand in the multi-billion sector.  The official data for the marketed value of chicken and eggs in 2019 was Ksh. 9, 227.8 million, a sharp drop compared to Ksh. 12,069.2 million the previous year. It was according to a report by the economic survey of 2020 using the current market prices.

How to do a profit cost analysis for rearing chicken

You can easily make huge profits rearing chicken too. Your poultry farm must observe better gardening practices.  It involves proper housing, vaccination and feeding. Besides, secure higher prices for your products.

To determine if this is fit for you, you need a simple profit analysis. The Cost-benefit analysis (CBA) for chicken farming compares;

  1. The revenue for selling; live birds, chicken meat, eggs & manure
  2. The cost (capital and operating expenses) of starting and raising a given number of chickens.
    • You will incur the capital expense one time; at the start of your business to build the chicken coop and buy equipment.
    • The operating expense is a variable cost you will incur to buy and rear chicken. It includes the price of a 1-day-old chick, vaccine, feed, etc.

The analysis has various assumptions for quantity requirements per bird. It also uses the current prices of farm inputs and finished products.  

Which is the most profitable chicken to rear?

The complete profit analysis follows a series of four blog posts. Each has the total revenue, total cost, gross and net profit for farming, indigenous chicken, layers or broilers. The analysis for each type of chicken looks into 100, 200, 500 and 1,000 birds reared under an intensive production system.

According to the analysis;

  • It is unprofitable to rear layers chicken if you keep less than about 300 birds. See the full analysis for layers chicken.
  • If you keep broiler chicken, the price per bird is above KES 450. You will incur losses even at 1,000 birds. See the full analysis for broiler chicken.
  • Indigenous chicken farming is the most profitable in Kenya. Besides, its meat and eggs fetch higher retail prices compared to the exotic types. See the full analysis for IC.

Samuel K

Samuel Kibicho is passionate about profitable and safe agriculture as a tool for wealth creation and food security. He is the founder of Agcenture and consults in market systems development (MSD), program management and result measurement, monitoring and evaluation for sustainable agriculture & rural development projects.

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