OPPORTUNITIES FOR PROFITS IN CHICKEN FARMING IN AFRICA
Family poultry farming in Sub-Saharan Africa is the most modest form of saving and/or productive investment that a rural household can afford. 85% of households raise poultry, 70% of which belong to women.
- Unmet Demand
Most African countries are net importers of chicken and eggs. This is very surprising to most Africans because for many African communities, chicken is an essential part of the diet and poultry are bred in almost every homestead in some places. So why the gap? Well, we simply are not producing enough chicken – not even for our own consumption. This leaves a huge unmet potential for more commercial production. There may be many chicken farmers in Africa, bu t most of them are not commercial farmers.
Most chicken farmers in Sub Saharan Africa do not use vaccination. This is because of lack of access/affordability on one hand and on the other hand erroneous assumptions that free range chicken are not susceptible to diseases, which they are. More and more farmers need vaccination for their poultry since it is the only source of an imal protein. Vaccinations are available for Newcastle Disease, Infectious bronchitis, Marek’s disease, and fowl pox. There are also relatively new diseases like the avian flu.
There is a huge gap in the area of access to affordable feeds. Feeds are actually the main expenditure for poultry farmers – they actually spend about 60-80% of their costs of raisin chickens on feeds. Providing a nutritious, complete feed at a low cost (by perhaps making use of readily available materials) is something that wou ld greatly address the needs of poultry farmers. Majority of poultry farmers may not have the knowledge required to mix their own feed. Perhaps there is room for feed mixing at a lower level involving say, bi products from fish factories, oil mills, beer manufacturers, and other crop processing. Many farmers would want to mix their own feeds but may lack the skills to do so.
- Contract Farming
There is great potential in the area of contract farming. Many farmers shy away from doing commercial or fairly large scale poultry production projects because they do not have assurance of market. Contract farming is a great solution to this problem. Market access for farmers in will encourage greater production of chicken a nd eggs and thus improve volume in the sector. Relatively small-scale farmers can take part in business through contract farming.
- Organic Chicken Products
Most people in Africa love organic chicken – or free range chicken as they are called. Their eggs are also considered better than others because of a more yellow yolk – caused by greater consumption of greens containing chlorophyll. Consumers in Africa are willing to pay more for free range chicken and free range eggs, both of which are believed to taste better. Many African countries however, lack mainstream distribution of free range eggs. They are bought from the farmers and sold in farmers markets, but cannot be found in supermarkets. South Africa is one example of a market that has exploited the potential of free range eggs and chicken, selling them even to the export market. Many other countries, such as Tanzania and Kenya are yet to exploit that opportunity.
Other Africa Poultry Information
- Profitable Chicken Farming Business
- Successful Poultry Coop Building
- Build an Affordable Long Lasting Chicken Coop
- Successful Egg Hatching for Baby Chicks
- Successful Chicken Egg Laying Strategies
- Successful Chicken Feeding
- How to Raise Chickens Stress Free
- Raising Chickens for Meat
- Successful Chicken Disease Management
- Chicken Resources