Do you want to start a poultry farming project? Are you an absolute beginner in the poultry industry? Find here a detailed poultry farming guide for both broiler and layer birds.
Generally, chicken, ducks, geese, turkeys come under the term of ‘Poultry’. And definitely, poultry farming for both egg and meat is a profitable business. Any individual can initiate this business as an intensive production system, or from the backyard, or as a commercial scale.
Broadly, we can classify poultry farms into two types. The farms for egg production and farms for meat production
This is a lucrative opportunity for the new generation entrepreneurs who look for a profitable livestock opportunity. Additionally, poultry farming is a great option for self-employment. One can earn handsome money from here.
However, the business demands some knowledge and skill. Broadly, the entire farming system includes the daily basis monitoring of the birds, feeding, and ensuring the overall well beings of the birds. If you want to start the business as a beginner, you can consider following some books on poultry farming.
Benefits of Poultry Farming
- First of all, the business doesn’t demand huge capital investment. One can start this business with small start-up capital too.
- Additionally, the business doesn’t demand a huge space for starting. If you don’t have your own land, you can start with a rented one. Even, you can initiate a small poultry farm in your backyard too.
- Furthermore, the business ensures a quick ROI compared to other livestock businesses.
- Highly productive local and foreign breeds are available globally for egg and meat production.
- Generally, farm management doesn’t demand highly skilled manpower. Additionally, the management practices are very easy, and simple training is required.
- Furthermore, you don’t need to obtain any licenses or permissions from the Govt. in most cases. However, it is advisable to check with the local authority.
- There are subsidy schemes for poultry farm owners. And most of the banks offer loans to farm owners.
- Apart from the meat or egg, you can also sell organic manure from your unit.
Poultry Farming Market Analysis
As the human population increases, the poultry industry continues to grow to meet the demand for poultry products in world markets. A poultry farm investment focusing on broiler production is a relatively easy business to run.
Poultry provides fresh and nutritious food and has a huge global demand. Global consumers of poultry products prefer them due to their nutrients and freshness. Poultry products are not much expensive and most people can afford those. Additionally, poultry meat is a healthier option than any other red meats.
You can sell the meat in the local market easily. Additionally, the demand for different types of ready-to-cook processed foods is increasing very fast. Therefore, meat processing units are the large-scale consumers of the meat.
Cost & Investment of Poultry Farming Project
Starting a poultry farm requires start-up capital and a budget for the operations. Usually, you can get loans from banks or other lenders for start-up costs. The start-up cost of a poultry farm varies with the size, and the facilities required for the farm to run.
The business involves both variable and fixed costs. Variable costs include the cost of electricity, equipment, house cleanout, feeding, etc. Fixed costs include the cost of labor, insurance, taxes, and land charges. However, you can reduce the costs with good management practices to increase profitability.
Things to Consider in Starting a Poultry Farming Business
- Select the right location for setting up a poultry farm. It is most crucial.
- Select the poultry bird according to the local market demand. Some of the most popular birds are Chicken, Turkey, Quail, Ostrich, Duck, Pigeon, and Peacock.
- Form a company and register your business
- Have a projected financial balance sheet. You must have a preparation of the upcoming costs and investments.
- Provide the birds proper feeds.
- Select the right method of farming.
- Provide the clean and right housing to the birds.
- Vaccination is important for disease-free farming
- Source the birds from reliable suppliers only.
- provide sufficient clean water to the birds.
- Finally, always be ready with alternative marketing channels to sell the birds in a timely manner.
Poultry Farming Methods
There are several popular methods for raising poultry. Some of them are popular for commercial farming and the others are popular for backyard or small-scale farming. Sometimes, you need to choose the farming method according to the number of the birds and area you have.
Layer Poultry Farming
When you raise the birds for only egg production, then it is layer poultry farming. Generally, hens start laying eggs at the age of 12-20 weeks. They start laying eggs regularly at 25 weeks of age. After 70-72 weeks of age egg production of layer, birds get reduced. In the next paragraphs, we will discuss the different layer poultry farming systems.
Free Range Farming
In this system, you will allow the birds to roam freely for a certain period of a day. At night, you will keep the birds inside the house. However, for a free-range poultry farming system, you have to select a suitable area of land with a proper drainage system and ventilation.
The organic method is also raising the birds as free-range farming. However, it has several differences from the previous method. Basically, it has restrictions on the routine use of synthetic yolk colorants, water, feed, medications, other feed additives. Additionally, you must raise the birds with low stocking density.
Basically, the yarding method is popular among small farmers. In this method, you will raise the cows and chickens together. The birds and cattle have the freedom of movement inside the fence.
Battery Cage Method
The battery cage method is one of the most popular systems of layer farming. In this system, usually, farmers use small-sized metal cages. The accommodation capacity of every cage is 3 to 8 hens. The system is very effective for layer farming. Additionally, you can maintain and monitor easily on a regular basis.
Furnished Cage Method
Actually, the furnished cage method is a quite developed version of the battery cage method. In this system, the hens get sufficient spaces and facilities than the battery cage system.
Broiler Poultry farming
When you raise the poultry birds commercially for meat production, it is called broiler farming. If you use the right farming method, then broiler chickens become suitable for consumption within 5 to 6 weeks of age.
Indoor Raising Method
Raising the birds inside the room is called the indoor raising method. You can use rice hulls, wood shavings, peanut shells, etc as litter on the floor of the house. Generally, a house of 400 feet long and 40 feet wide can accommodate about 20,000 birds.
Free Range Method
The free-range method is simply keeping the broilers outside as the layers. The birds that take more time to get the marketable body weight, are suitable for free-range farming methods.
The organic farming method is almost the same as free-range farming systems. However, the birds are not allowed to randomly using of in-feed or in-water medications, other food additives, and synthetic amino acids.
In starting a poultry farm, selecting the right location is the most important aspect. It is always better if you have your own land for setting up the farm. However, if you don’t, you can set up the farm on the rented land too. However, the requirement of the area of the land depends on the number of birds.
Never select a location that falls under the Municipal area. Most of the cities don’t allow livestock farming. Therefore, check the local laws before selecting any location. Additionally, noise and pollution-free environments are always preferable for commercial poultry farming.
Selecting Poultry Breeds
You must select high-quality productive poultry breeds for successful farming. Additionally, you must choose the right breed according to your end requirements. In selecting the breeds, you must consider the local market demand, area availability, and the climatic condition of your location.
You can find numerous domestic and foreign breeds for poultry farming. Some of the most popular poultry breeds are broilers, cockerels, and layers.
Good and suitable housing play a vital role in raising all types of poultry birds. Some birds grow and live happily on the floor of a poultry house and some in cages. However, you must make a suitable house for your birds and ensure the availability of all types of necessary facilities for them. Additionally, always keep sufficient space in the poultry house. Clean the house and equipment on a regular basis.
Feed costs have a major impact on the profitability of poultry farm operations. The high cost of feed is related to the energy and protein contents of the diet. In an unbalanced diet, with an excess protein, the feed would cost more, thus increasing production costs.
Feed for broilers varies according to age. The percentage of ingredients differs between the starter, grower, and finisher feeds. However, the ingredients in all feeds used were corn, soy, fish granule, mono di-calcium, broiler pre-mix, methionine, lysine, enzymes, choline, coxi, salt, stone granules, and soy oil.
Management & Care
Overall care and proper management are necessary for the well-being of the birds. Additionally, proper management ensures fewer disease attacks on your farm. Apart from proper food and sufficient water, you must provide the vaccine at the right time.
Vaccination is an effective way to reduce the negative effects of diseases that can cause losses in a poultry operation. Diseases can be caused by viruses, mycoplasma, bacteria, fungi, protozoa, and parasites. Viruses are the number one cause of poultry disease and are considered to be the largest threat to poultry farms. Viral diseases can be reduced by proper sanitation on the farm, biosecurity measures, and vaccination of the chicks and chickens.
Starting a poultry farming business demands adequate knowledge. You can browse our Books Segment for getting effective resources about the poultry farming business.
Rupak is the founder of MUVSI. He is a small business consultant by profession. His mission is to make people know how to make money and understand personal finance for a better living.