If you are looking to enter the poultry farming industry then a hatchery is probably the easiest, which requires the least space, the least knowledge and least capital.
What is an egg / chicken hatchery
A chicken or egg hatchery is a business that hatches chicken eggs and sells the chicks as what is called “day old chicks”, the chicks is sold to people who will grow them and who will either end up slaughtering them or sell them when they are grown up.
Can't I just grow the chicks myself and make more profit?
On a small scale these are actually two different businesses that have different equipment, space and skill requirements, small (and many large) business owners tend to focus on one or the other, we will look at growing for eggs (for consumption) and meat in the future.
What do I need to get started in this business? Capital? Equipment?
A egg/chicken hatchery can actually be started with little capital, this is because the equipment: incubators, hatchers, brooders is available in various sizes, the larger the more expensive. Obviously this also means the less capital you start with the less capacity you will have, the less money you will make.
The equipment you will need is:
Hatcher (you get 2in1 incubators and hatchers).
What does all these equipment do?
The incubators and hatchers are used to hatch the eggs and the brooders are used to keep the chicks warm after they have hatched.
Can I make some of these equipment myself to keep my costs low?
Yes, the brooders can be assembled yourself based on your space requirements. Incubators and hatchers are electronically temperature controlled and is probably best purchased electronically unless you have electrical knowledge or can have someone make them for you.
How much space will I need?
It all depends on how many chicks you will be hatching at a time. As you know eggs are small, so are chicks. While you can start with a small space (spare room/garage/shed) you need proper ventilation.
Where do I sell my day old chicks?
One of the most important components of success in this business is selling your day old chicks as soon as possible. As discussed above you will sell your chicks to people who will grow them. This does not just mean other small business owners, depending on your location you could sell to big producers. It is standard practice to sell day old chicks in ventilated boxes in quantities of 100.
How quick till I make money?
Chicks take only 21 days to hatch; you can start generating an income just three weeks after starting. This means you can operate in three week cycles or if you have enough space you can operate in weekly cycles. Selling day-old chicks will provide you with the fastest method of generating an income. You’ll also be able to get a good profit margin, because there is no need to feed the chicks. They are off your hands when they’re only a day old.
Just out of curiosity how much more work is selling grown chickens than day old chicks?
Yes, you will obviously get more for a grown bird than a day old but then you have to nurture it for 6 weeks all the while housing them, feeding them and giving them medicine.