Poultry Farming For Beginners – 8 Things You Need To Know
It is expected for new farmers to venture into poultry as a result of the widespread belief that poultry farming is the better road to get into agriculture. To some extent, this perception is true, but from an Agric-Tech Information point of view, it is not always true.
It may be a thing to practise poultry farming in your garden but another thing once you incorporate business dynamics. This is what we have highlighted today in this article. This post will highlight the operations and the dynamics that help you as you venture into poultry farming. Here are eight things that you should keep in mind before you start a poultry farm business:
8 Things Poultry Farming Beginners Need To Know
1. Feasibility Study
Conducting a feasibility study is a crucial starting point. Once you finish the feasibility study, you will view and approach the business with a better understanding of what it takes. A feasibility study on your farm will unearth the viability of your business on all fronts such as technical viability, operations viability, and business model viability. A well-organised outline in the feasibility study of your farm should include the introduction, technology, industry, product, market environment, regulations, financial projections, and risk factors.
2. Make A Financial Projection
This is among the most overlooked parts of a feasibility study that business owners ignore and we have to shine some light on it. It does not matter if you are starting with little capital, make your financial projections. Poultry farming is like any other business, and with any business, the aim is to get profit. If you lack any experience in running a poultry business, it is possible that you are overestimating your numbers. You may also end up shooting yourself in the foot since the lack of a projection can hinder the proper valuation of your business. Nevertheless, a decent financial forecast, income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow analysis, will give you a better picture and you may be surprised by the numbers.
3. Business Plan
The first two factors that we have discussed are the elephant in the room, and when you consider them, you can go ahead to draft a business plan. Luckily, your feasibility study will ease the process of writing your business plan. The business plan for your business will characteristically feature the way you intend to grow and sustain the business. It should include the executive summary, operations plan, business overview, SWOT analysis, sales and marketing, and the management team.
4. Poultry Management
For anybody who has been in the poultry farming business, they can agree that if things are correctly done in the first year, a lot of hitches can be evaded. In this case, avoid being the farmer who reaps a lot of money without securing efficient management for the poultry farm. Your managers should comprise of a poultry specialist, farm maintenance team, an accountant and the logistics team.
5. Poultry Niche
Poultry is a large niche which has several sub-niches. Fortunately, you already know that from the knowledge acquired during the feasibility phase. Your poultry niche defines a lot of things such as where and how you purchase your poultry feeds, equipment, and medicines for enhanced treatments. It is important to mention that poultry niches include hatchery, meat production (broilers), egg production (layers), poultry consultancy services, poultry processing and packaging, and the sale of poultry equipment.
6. Equipment And Live Stock
Many hatcheries can deliver day-old chicks to your location. You will want to choose the one that is closest to your poultry farm and the one that has a proven delivery record. This also applies for the feed suppliers too. You have to consider the latest watering, feeding, and lighting equipment that will save your labour expenditure. You also need to link up with a respectable vet. You need to consult a doctor who will visit your farm regularly and who is available in case of a crisis. Ask your vet to give you a schedule for medication and vaccinations.
7. Preparing For Arrival Of Chicks
You should clean and disinfect the poultry house and allow it to rest for at up to 7 days before you place the chicks. Also, you should sterilise and clean equipment like the feeders, brooders, and drinkers. Fresh litter such as straw and wood shavings should be used to make the nest warm. The litter provides insulation and soaks up the moisture from the chicks’ droppings. It also prevents any damage to the chicken’s legs from the slipping on a slippery surface. You should ensure that the depth of the litter is between 8 to 10 cm. Before the chicks arrive, ensure that the feed and clean water are available.
Place the feed in flat surfaces or box lids to encourage your chicks to feed. At the early stages, you can introduce the chicks to water by placing their beaks in the water. You can also help the chicks to feed and drink by hanging a bright bulb one meter above the litter level. The source of heat should be installed 24 hours before the chicks arrive. Furthermore, you can encourage the chicks to eat and drink by putting their feed in silver-coloured trays, and placing decorated marbles in their drinkers.
8. Standard Operating Procedure
You have productively completed a poultry farming cycle, and you have gained some experience of running your poultry business. Good going, you only got started. Do you wish to have even more success in your next poultry farm cycle? Draft a standard operating procedure. A typical operating procedure takes into account your farm’s main processes and helps you to stay compliant and consistent. These are the factors that you should consider before you start a poultry farm and we hope they help your business.