Poultry Kenya: After their graduation from different colleges, Nelson Maina and his friends began their search for white collar jobs. But to their surprise, with no job experience, no one listened to their story.
Maina and his four friends decided to venture into poultry farming in 2006. With a capital of Sh100,000 from their savings, they were ready to start their poultry farm, Modern Moguls Farm at Karogoto, Nyeri County.
“We decided to venture into farming because poultry keeoing in Kenya is probably one of the most lucrative business when it is setup and managed properly,” said Maina, the farm manager. At first they decided to keep the commonly kept breeds (broilers and layers) as a way of trying to penetrate into the market.
Six years down the line, Maina attended a poultry farming seminar in Israel and came across another breed and upon his return the group diversified to an exotic breed known as Israel breed which is more profitable compared to others.
“This kind of chicken is way bigger than the local Kenyan chicken, weighing and fetching more profits as well. The birds are imported either as eggs and hatched or as live birds,” he said.
Although the breed was doing well in Kenya, a problem arose when hens started laying eggs without sitting on them to hatch, forcing them to get an incubator. Without cash to purchase an incubator they applied for a Youth Fund Loan and fortunately they were given money to buy two incubators which can hatch 528 eggs at a go.
“The only challenge we are facing is that since this breed don’t hatch eggs, then we have to use incubator and this means that you have to keep the chicks in a brooder to keep low mortality,” he said.
Currently, the farm has employed two workers and more than 200 mature birds. They can hatch 200 chicks daily. Though it sounds as a big investment, Maina revealed that they only sell chicks and not the eggs or mature birds unless they are disposing them.
“We dispose our chicken after one-and-a-half to two years depending on the weight of the chicken. Our cock can weigh up to 12 kilogrammes while our hen goes up to eight kilogrammes when well fed,” he said.
He revealed that they don’t sell one-day-old chick as the norm in this industry but they sell three-week-old chicks so that mortality rate are minimal. A three-week-old chick goes for Sh200 and a mature chicken goes for between Sh1500 and Sh3,000 depending on the size.
He says that even though Kenya has a shortage of poultry farmers, the problem might be there 10 years to come because most people are now taking white meat instead of red meat.
The aspect of livestock farming presents one of the finest opportunities for smart thinking entrepreneurs to make good money within the shortest period of time possible. He urges youths who are struggling to make the end meets to apply for youth fund loans and they will be able to boost their business. Poultry Kenya.