May 31, 2018
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7 Things You Should Know Before Starting a Poultry Farm

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It’s not unusual for new farmers to start out with poultry because of the popular opinion that poultry farming is an easy entry into farming in general. To an extent, this opinion is true. But as an agric-tech platform that deals with poultry farmers on a daily basis, we can emphatically point out that this is not always the case.

It is one thing to start poultry farming in your backyard but another thing when you bring in the business dynamics, and that is what we’d like to highlight today in this post.

There are already a ton of post online that go straight into finding a good location for your farm but we try to approach things differently on the Farmcrowdy blog. Instead, we’ll show you the operations, and the dynamics that 99% of these posts don’t talk about.

Without further ado, here are the things you should know before starting a poultry farm business.

  1. Feasibility Study: A feasibility study is not a business plan but it’s just as important. By the time you are done with your feasibility study, you will approach the business of poultry with a firm understanding of what is involved.

The feasibility study on your poultry farm will help you know if the business is viable on all fronts including business viability, technical viability, business model viability, operations viability and so on.

A good outline in your feasibility study for your farm business includes the introduction, product, technology, market environment, industry, financial projections, risk factors and regulations.

  1. Do a Financial Projection: This is an often overlooked part of a feasibility study that small business owners don’t bother with and we just couldn’t help but shine the light on it.

It doesn’t matter if your capital is small, as small as N100,000, do your financial projections. Poultry farming is a business, and as with any business, the goal is to make a profit. If you had no previous experience running a poultry farm, it’s highly likely that you are over-shooting your numbers. Sometimes, even shooting yourself in the foot because without a projection, your poultry business cannot be properly valued.

However, a proper financial projection, think Balance Sheet, Income Statement and Cash flow Analysis, will clear your eyes and you will be surprised at the figures because numbers don’t lie.

  1. Business Plan: The first two on this list are the elephant in the room and once you are satisfied, you proceed to write a business plan. Needless to say, your feasibility study will make writing your business plan a whole lot easier.

A business plan for your poultry farm will typically feature how you intend on growing and sustaining the business. It will include the executive summary, business overview, operations plan, sales and marketing, SWOT analysis, and the management team.

At this point, let us quickly point out that the purpose of this post is not to offer anyone financial advice. Each scenario is different, so please consult your financial or business planner for professional advice

  1. Poultry Management: We have discovered in our first year of successfully overseeing farm sponsors and farm operations that if only things are done in the right order, a lot of problems can be avoided.

In this case, don’t be the farmer who ploughs thousands of cash without first securing proper management for the farm.

Your managers will include a poultry specialist, accountant, farm maintenance team down to your logistics team.

  1. Poultry Niche: Poultry is actually a broad niche with sub-niches, but of course you already knew that because you went through the feasibility phase, smart cookie, you …

Since your poultry niche determines a lot of things, like how and where you source your poultry, it still deserves a mention in this post.

Poultry niches include Hatchery, Egg production (Layers), Meat production (Broilers), Poultry processing and packaging, Poultry consultancy services and sale of Poultry equipment.

  1. Finding the Off-takers: The search for off-takers begin the moment you start your poultry farm or dare we say, in the stages of putting together your business plan. Your poultry farm is as successful as the speed at which off-takers are available to off-take your poultry, at a good rate.

 

  1. Standard Operating Procedure: You have successfully completed a poultry farm cycle and now have a bit of experience on running a poultry farm. Good going, but you are just getting started. Want to have an even smoother poultry farm cycle? Write a standard operating procedure.

A standard operating procedure documents your farm’s key processes and will help you and your management stay consistent and compliant.

These are the things you need to know before starting a poultry farm and we hope you find it useful.

 

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