How can you make more money in commercial poultry farming in Kenya? This post will give you the most practical tips you can follow to easily double you farm profits from your broiler, layers or improved kienyeji chicken farming. They include various methods that focus on
- Reduce farming costs in your chicken or turkey farm by making chicken feed at home or consider organic/free range farming etc.
- Earn more income from your poultry farm through value addition, large economies of scale or selling your chicken farm by products such as chicken manure and feathers.
To be a successful poultry farmer treat your farming as a commercial business beyond raising domestic birds for white meat and eggs. The ideas below list various changes you can make in your poultry farm to achieve your profit goals. They include;
- Write and execute a poultry farming in Kenya business plan
- Raise specialty (high-value) poultry species such as guinea fowls and ostrich
- Value addition Farming
- Sell by-products from your chicken farm such as chicken manure and feathers.
- Invest in organic poultry farming
- Use the free-range poultry production.
- Utilize local cheap resources to cut on budgets
- Make your chicken feed at home instead of buying
- Raise improved indigenous breeds which are easy to manage on diseases and pests.
- Diversify your poultry farm operations
- Engage in contract chicken farming
The post further explains each of these ideas in detail.
Use a Poultry farming Business Plan
Your first step in running a successful business is to manage it professionally. You will need market research and an execution strategy to run a profitable farm. Then the process will lead to a business plan draft for your poultry farm. It will guide you to operate a small farm and expand it in scale and variety of products. It will inform your record-keeping, financing and marketing plans. It should not work as a fixed plan, but a road map with pointers of where you should be.
Raise Specialty Birds
Most poultry farmers like to raise the typical birds with high demand such as chicken, ducks and turkeys. There are other specialty birds that you can raise for aesthetic and tourism goals. These high value birds will bring you more money than the conventional birds.
The ones you can consider starting for a speciality poultry farm are;
- Guinea fowls
Others are turkey which have a high demand during the Thanksgiving holidays. Geese are kept for their expensive downy feathers used for high-quality fabric used in beddings.
Final and semi-processed products fetch you higher profits than unprocessed products. Some ideas you can consider for your farm are;
- Food processing; Sell slaughtered, dressed and cooked chicken and eggs rather than live birds and uncooked eggs.
- Brooding; Incubate eggs and sell one-day-old chicks instead of unfertilized eggs.
However; note you will need to add investments in cold storage and incubators for your improved poultry farm.
Sell poultry farm by-Products
By-products from your farm can bring you additional income. The major ones you should sell are;
- Poultry (chicken) manure. Organic farmers can buy a bag at Ksh 30 of chicken manure to feed dairy cows and apply it in green vegetable gardens.
- Feathers; are used to make various decorative products like masks, hats, fans, earrings and artificial flowers.
- Waste poultry meat products; chicken heads, feet and gizzards can produce nutritional human and animal food.
Organic chicken Farming
Organic suppliers earn up to 200% more profits than conventional farmers. To produce and sell organic chicken products, raise them free of growth hormones and antibiotic traces. Pasture them fully or feed them on certified organic chicken feeds and pesticides. As an additional tip to make more from organic farming, brand your products as free-range products.
Use local resources
It can be expensive to make a modern poultry house. To cut down on your costs, use local materials and resources to improvise a safe poultry house on a budget, laying nests and brooding equipment. Some materials you can use are; old iron sheets, cardboards and plastics as building materials.
Free-range production system
Buying chicken feed is the most expensive component of poultry farming. To cut down on the costs, use a hybrid production system. An intensive production system is the most expensive, whereas a free-range system is the cheapest. To achieve high-quality products like yellowish chicken meat and York eggs, use a semi-intensive method. You will feed them on commercial feed, grains, vegetables and kitchen waste. In the evening you will release your birds to pasture in the compound a few hours daily.
Formulate your chicken feed
According to the projected profits analysis, the average cost of buying commercial feeds is over 90% on average of the total costs. A single reduction of this cost would translate to huge profits for you. As a farmer, you can invest in grinding, mixing and pelletizing chicken feed. Other methods are gathering protein-rich chicken feeds like dried locusts or omena.
Raise Improved indigenous Breeds
Indigenous chickens are the most profitable to raise. They experience low infection rates to common poultry diseases. Besides, their meat and eggs fetch higher retail prices than exotic products. These two qualities make them the best choice for entrepreneurs interested in profitable chicken farming. For these reasons, invest in improved breeds like the Improved KARI kienyeji chicken breeds. These bird types grow fast and have higher quality yields. For instance, the adult cockerel can weigh up to 2.5 kg compared to a pure indigenous one that weighs 0.8-1 kilogram and takes longer to mature.
Supply poultry inputs and products
There are many challenges affecting poultry farming in kenys. The top ones are poor access to quality chicken feed and vaccines. Majority of rural farmers find them unaffordable due to expensive costs of poultry farming inputs. Besides, they make low income for challenges they face in agriculture marketing to sell their eggs, live birds and meat.
You can make more profits if you diversify your poultry farm operations to solve key challenges for them. Some of the key areas to consider are;
- Brokering quality farm inputs such as chicken feed and vaccines
- Sell poultry products at a profit such as eggs and live birds.
- Mobilize smallholders poultry farmers to form cooperatives and chicken producer groups.
Contracted commercial chicken farming
Contract farming will help to stabilize fluctuating chicken prices. You will sign an agreement with a formal chicken farm, a supermarket or a hotel. You will produce given quantities of eggs and meat. Your buyer will buy it at locked prices. You will also enjoy access to quality inputs, information and credit on time.