How To start organic poultry farm in Ghana
Secret To Raising free-range Organic Chickens In Ghana
Welcome to Meza farms, in this article, I am going to walk you through the process, the mindset, and reasons you need to start an organic poultry farm in Ghana.
One major reason you must start a poultry farm in Africa is the fact that millions of dollars are spent by African countries importing frozen chickens and other chicken products.
Starting a poultry farm may let you have a share of that piece of the cake and also makes you part of the developers of the continent.
Why should I start a poultry farm in Ghana?
According to reports by the business insider as of May 2020 Ghana imports over US$ 300 million worth of chicken which is equivalent to 180,000 metric tonnes of chicken per year, or the equivalent of 5 million chickens per week.
Which in turn is making those countries richer at the expense of you the youth who is unemployed and waiting for the government to create jobs for you.
It is common knowledge that governments don’t create jobs, its entrepreneurs who create jobs.
That’s the mindset we need to develop as Africa youth and take our destiny into our hands.
Here am talking about starting a business in a little way, start small and think big to make it big.
Some folks refers to crossing the Mediterranean sea to europe and embarking on risky journeys to Libya and the arab countries as taking their destiny into their own hands-life is too precious to risk your life that way.
You can make life better for yourself in Ghana.
”We can make it.we just need to start.”
My belief is the duty of the government to create a viable economy that will be conducive for businesses to thrive, an economic system that will support the infant industry and local businesses to succeed.
From a wider perspective, African countries spent billions’ of dollars importing chickens and its by-products mean while we have 50-60 % of farm land available for farming? so why this tragedy? why are we importing food to feed ourselves?
well, it may be that because our parents told us that farm land is unavailable and we have also nurture the mindset that farming is a business for the uneducated and antiquated and unprofitable venture?
But that is far from the truth
Africa Foods imports devastating?
In general Africa countries spent over 35 billion dollars on food import in a single year (2017) and the numbers are expected to reach higher in 2025 by approximate of $ 110 billion, Worrying, right?
if we don’t start farming and throw-away the mindset that farming cannot make us rich and wealthy. Poverty and hunger can’t stop chasing us according to the book of proverb 6:9-11
The information above alone should be enough to motivate you to start thinking about starting your poultry farm in Ghana.
Since our current demand for chicken exceeds the current production and there is an import of such huge quantity,
In fact, starting a poultry farm means you will be able to have a share of that $300 million leaving the shore of our countries to another farmers elsewhere.
Is the poultry farm business not saturated?
My answer to you is that the poultry farming business is not saturated not in Ghana Nor in Nigeria and not even in Brazil where most of the world chickens produced are imported from.
According to data that I come upon currently, Ghana is producing at a capacity of 10% of the total number of chicken products that are currently in demand.
Which Means 90% of what we consumed as a country is from import.
Ghana’s current production of chicken is to about 58,000 metric tonnes whereas the national demand is about 400,000 metric tonnes according to the report by the business insider.
However, converting to monetary values it was estimated to be worth 375 million dollars leaving the country to another farmer who has the same blood and head as we are.
What is limiting us ( the Youth) from embarking on the journey to greatness through poultry farming?
Imagine what 1 million dollars can do for your future, Why not start on the journey to making a piece of that dollars through agribusiness?
The only difference between us is that those who produce and shipped the residue to us thinks differently.
They think about the future and they aim to escape the rat race and poverty. Why not you? stop the excuses !!!
Isn’t poultry farming a risky investment?
Let me quote what warren buffet said ”Risk is not knowing what you are doing”.
Believe you understand that quote? it is not the investment that is risky but is you the investor.
The mindset you need to develop as an entrepreneur is to have a belief that if ”only you do the right thing you will get the right results.
The truth is if you don’t understand and learn how to start a poultry farm right, you are taking a very high risk just like staking the lottery. You don’t know your outcome.
So I am going to show you how to start a poultry farm and become very successful, with any amount of capital you can start small.
To start a poultry farm successfully:
1.You must understand the business of poultry (Risk mitigation)
when starting every business you must strive to learn the necessary practices and guidance as to how to successfully develop and grow your business, implement strategies, and how best to lower your risk of failure, that’s called risk mitigation.
In the poultry farming, your ability to lower your risk and increase your level of success mainly depends on the amount of information at your disposal.
With this in mind,as a new or inexperienced farmer, your willingness to learn and implement what you learned may reduce your risk by 90%.
Morever, learning from experts builds your confidence and knowledge base to a high extend which may trickle down to the success of your farm.
Key take away: Learn from the expert before you start your own poultry farm.
2.Defining Your area of specialization (Niche)
Poultry farming is a very wide business with different prospects and category.
1.chicken Farming ( egg and Meat production under Broilers & layers
4.Guinea Fowl Farming
All these are profitable niches you can start as a poultry business and become very successful.
how profitable is the poultry farm business?
First and foremost, poultry farming or chicken rearing is very lucrative if you know what you are doing and doing it right. If you prevent the occurrences of disease rather than treating the disease itself.
The best antidote to eliminating the risk by half or 50% is adherence to vaccination timeliness and secondly to reduce your risk by an additional 20% is to ensure your environment is safe, hygiene protocols are observed and last bio-security measures are strictly obeyed.
That’s accounts for 10% risk mitigation. The remaining 20% to ensure your success in poultry farming is feeding, marketing, and management practices like providing quality feeds and water to your chickens at all time possible.
In addition to that, Chickens are great when it comes to giving back and multiplying what you give them. So literally, your input determined your output.
Especially, If you give chickens all their required nutrients in their feed I bet you they will offer and multiply the number of eggs they give you daily and vice versa.
In short, It all boils down to knowing what your chickens want and giving it to them, they will multiply and grow fast for you to make more money.
How much do I need to start a poultry farm in Ghana?
Get a piece of Land
Importantly, buy or rent a piece of land in a peri-urban location where you can set up your poultry farm.
In farming communities, you can rent an acre of land for Gh¢100 which is less than $50, and build your small chicken house with available local materials.
Alternatively, you can buy an acre of land in some areas for as little Gh¢12000 which may seem a lot of money to the beginner who is unemployed.
But remember: renting land for a year may have its uncertainty but is worth starting from there.
Even if you have Gh¢5000 you can start poultry with a maximum of 400 chickens on a quarter plot of land and become very successful in the long run instead of risking your life traveling to the Arab countries to suffer.
Do Free-range organic chickens if you have little capital because of its low cost and have many other advantages that we shall explore in our next session.
Is commercial poultry farming on free-range feasible and easy to start?
Setting up a Free-range poultry farm is very lucrative and cost-effective.its ideal business for young people with little capital and a small piece of land
Free-range chickens are chickens raised and grow on the natural environment without limiting their movement and natural behaviour as chickens.
Organic chickens and the demand for organic products have doubled in digit around the united states and many parts of the globe including Africa by health-conscious individuals.
Without a doubt, there is peak demand for local or free-range chickens during festive seasons in Ghana and many parts of the continent .
which also guarantees that’s there is a demand for a free-range chicken. So on commercial-scale feasibility and market is attainable.
There are instances where an average of 20,000 chickens are raised on free-range and given organic feeds. Thus free range on a commercial level is attainable.
Why raise Organic Chickens?
- Organic Chickens are Healthy
Many Farmers have poor knowledge of the risks associated with the use of chemicals, including the essential role of the correct application(withdrawal period) and the necessary precautions.
There are instances where animals are injected and sold the following day for consumers. Even farmers who are well aware of the harmful effects of these chemicals are sometimes unable to translate this awareness into their practices. The more reason organic is the way to go.
- Organic chickens are highly nutritious and healthy
Free-range organic chickens as compared to conventionally grown ones which have been injected with a dozen of growth promoters and antibiotic.
when you eat the local chicken, crack the bones in there is a lot of safe marrow which contains a lot of calcium and other essential body function composition as compared to the conventionally grown chicken without any marrow.
Moreover, farming organic chickens or free-range chickens is less costly to raise as compared to chickens caged and raised intensively.
How To start an organic chicken farm in Ghana
Develop a strong passion for farming and a strong hatred for poverty, by doing so you will be motivated and empowered to start a poultry farm in Ghana.
Conditions for organic poultry include:
•Appropriate housing that allows chickens to be chickens. (be able to roam, scratch and dust bath)
•You must Provide organic feeds
•No antibiotics, drugs or medications that promote unnatural growth
•No genetically modified foods or feed is allowed
• Cages are not permitted in some countries as cages restrict the movement of chickens.
*The land must be chemical free for at least the past three years before your current farm project
Organic materials and equipment must be used to ensure no contamination.
NB: Organic farming is not expensive to start since locally available materials are highly recommended to be used in your housing and farm operations
Housing is one of the most important factors for organic chicken production.
The housing should be safe and comfortable for the chicken to live. The shelter is very important to protect chickens from bad weather, predators, and diseases. When starting free-range chicken, it is important to provide shelter with a fenced-off your site.
The advantages of housing with fenced include:
- The shelter or housing protects chickens against rain, wind and hot sun
The chicken house protects chickens against predators, wild animals, and thieves.
- Fenced off housing helps provide chickens with feed and water easily while also protecting your chicken feed from being eaten by other chickens.
- Fencing your chicken house helps in easy Monitoring of your chickens.
- Fencing helps reduce the outbreak of infectious diseases from neighboring chickens to your chickens.
Breeds Of Chicken For Organic chicken rearing in Ghana
when starting an organic chicken farm, factors worth looking at include the adaptation of birds to the local environment, disease resistance, and growth performance.
My most preferred breeds are the Kuroiler, There soo many good breeds to choose from such as Noiler, Ken-bro from Kenya, Rhode Island reds, Sussex breed, Plymouth, Australorp, Wyandotte, jersey giant but I preferred to use Kuroiler or the Kari improved kienyeji chicken.
This is because of their adaptability to the environment and highly tolerant to diseases.
Kuroiler breed is available in Ghana and sold at Gh¢1.20 and Gh¢5.20 for day-old chicks and the 2 weeks old respectively.
I prefer this breed of chicken because of the main advantage they offer from laying more eggs to be able to scratch for their food and also highly adaptable to the harsh environment and highly disease resistant.
Kuroiler is a hybrid chicken that grows early by 4-5 months they start laying and ready for market.
These chickens attract premium prices with little cost of feeding as they have good feed conversion ability.
How To Construct A cheap Chicken House For free-range chicken
Our main objective is to use locally available cheap and best materials as possible to build a long-lasting chicken house that may not break down with very little winds blowing it.
Therefore the quality and strength of the chicken house structure must be reinforced.
Local materials such as Bamboo, and hard timber must be used and roofing materials such as iron sheet and also thatch (popularly called bamboo can be used if you can weave it).
It makes chicken’s house cold during the hot season, and chickens like it.
The model of chicken pen, inner space, and materials are as follows:
The pen is divided into two blocks (rooms) and typically 40 feet long and 15 feet width, 10 feet height from the land surface this chicken house can accommodate a maximum of 500 chickens.
Blocking fence is the is a fenced-off area to keep chickens with different production (breeders, baby chicks and broilers) and also isolate them from neighboring chickens and people
- Separate chickens in each block (room) according to the type of production: parent stocks, baby chicks, broiler
- The density of broiler chickens are 7-8 heads per one square meter
- Build Perches inside the chicken house.
In our villages, chickens will climb up on the nearby trees or on cocoa tress if available at exactly six(6 pm) to sleep,
The trees and branches they sleep on what is called perches. You must build multiple ones for your chickens to get enough space to sleep during the night.
Perche construction for your chicken
Simple tree branches and sliced bamboo is an idea, the branches must be small enough for the chickens to be able to stand on without any difficulty.
The perch construction should be 0.7 meters high from the land surface and 0.7 meters width from the wall of the pen. Each interval of perches has 2meters. chickens like the perches soo much as it makes them feel secured and protected as they sleep in the night.
- To start a poultry farm in Ghana you must learn from the expert to understand the poultry rearing tips and tricks to avoid failure
- You don’t need a million dollars to start an organic or free-range poultry farm in Ghana, in fact, Darko farms started with only one chicken you can start with 3-10
- Organic poultry products are in high demand and there is available market and preference for local chicken meat start now.
- Farming can make you richer than you could imagine. all it takes is learning and application coupled with passion and your determination to succeed