Comparing Broiler Production With Layer Farming
Are you really confused on whether to start rearing broiler or layer in your poultry farming? Do you need the detailed analysis on which is more profitable between broiler and layer? Do you have a passion for poultry farming and you are thinking of venturing into the profitable poultry business?
If yes, I will succinctly outline the benefits, economic importance and disadvantage of rearing each of the said types of chickens and at the end you will end up choosing the one that seems more profitable to you.
Prior to moving farther, it is ideal to appreciate the concept of the two classes of poultry birds; Broiler and Layer Chickens. Broilers are poultry birds that are usually reared purposely for meat production. They possess a strong gene, which makes them grow faster than the native layers.
In fact, within a couple of weeks, broiler could grow big and reach heavy weights hence make it protrude out and crippled (unable to walk properly), this is as a result of its excessive weight gain. Initially, their feeds are made intentionally to produce excess energy and enable them to gain lots of weight.
Layers on the other hand, are poultry birds reared solely for egg production. They possess genes that enabled them to lay eggs often (note that, not every layer lays daily, in fact it is unrealistic).
The layer is not expected to gain weight and it feeds composition is mixed in a way that it will help it lay eggs with little weight.
Now, the question is: Broilers or Layers; which is more profitable?
This piece is not in the best position to give you the direct answers. But whether the broiler poultry farming business is more profitable than layer will depend greatly on your skills, marketing strategies and the starting capital you employ.
I will, however, explain the reasons on the basis of challenges you are bound to encounter while rearing chicken (either broiler or layer chicken) and you will on your own decide which is more profitable using your strengths.
Broilers Vs Layers Startup Cost
Initially, starting a poultry farming business requires much capital to begin with but the less startup cost is needed to start a broiler farming compare to layer. Broilers need clean water, few vaccines, space, light and food, within 7 weeks (roughly 2 months) they will be ready to sell and you can start rearing another set.
Layers on the other hand also require all what broilers take with multiple vaccines and debeaking (what if you will have to debeak over 2,000 of them?). Even If you are going to practice battery cage system to avoid debeaking, just imagine the extra cost you will be in need of to set up the battery cage system plus additional cost of feeding for longer months’ sequel to the chicken start laying.
Marketing for Broilers Vs Layers
If you are interested in broiler farming, identify your potential buyers, how much they could buy, what can hinder the market and what you could do to leverage the market.
Informatively, Broilers are not too good to market because the chickens will keep on consuming the feed whether you have a prospect to buy the chickens or you don’t.
In as much the broilers stay in your poultry without selling, you will keep incurring loss because irrespective of the excessive weight or how big the broilers are, it depends on the amount the customers are willing and able to pay.
While layers on the other hand, are easier to market because the eggs the chickens produced can be stored conveniently without getting spoilt. You can decide to sell the eggs whenever you are willing to and without being desperate about it.
Even though the layers will be fed every day, yet they will be laying eggs that you will get to distribute to your customers on a daily basis. The main low to the layer marketing is that the egg price in most region part of the world is fixed based on the location.
This implied that even if your layer poultry farm produces a big egg, you are bound to sell them at the same price other farmers do. However, looking at the marketing difference and disadvantage, I’m sure by now you should have identified which is more profitable in term of marketing.
Broiler Vs Layer Disease Outbreak
Broiler versus layer, which is more profitable? Undoubtedly, rearing of broilers to reach the market weight and ready to sell doesn’t take more than 45 days or in some cases 6 to 8 weeks. This is just a little period of time. With this timing, it shows that you can rear so many sets of broiler in one year.
Now, when there is a disease outbreak, you will lose some of your chickens and within 2-3 months, you will be back rearing another set of the broiler chickens. But the reverse is the case for layers.
If a disease outbreak should occur to layers, and some should die, it is practically impossible to start another set of layers you will need to wait for closely a year to fully recover from such loss. So therefore, looking at it from this perspective, between broiler and layer you should be able to determine which is more profitable.
Immunization for Broilers and Layers
The amount of money you will spend while treating layers’ diseases will be more than that of broilers. The reason is that, layers stay longer as such it requires more money to purchase their vaccines, drugs and other processes like debeaking.
Almost every disease affects layers in their egg production which is only the main source of your income. If there is shortage of feed for the birds, it will reduce their egg size; on the basis of infection or disease even down to debeaking, it affects layers’ egg production greatly.
The prevention or treatment of diseases by some vaccines especially for coccidiosis do affects layers’ egg production as well.
Level of Skills for Broilers Vs Layers
There is a lot of difference between broilers and layers and their management. As far as broilers are concerned, you can start it farming business as a novice and become an expert after rearing few sets of birds or chickens. This is so because layers need fewer vaccines as they wouldn’t stay long as layers.
To begin with broilers, you need up to 30 or 50 broiler chickens to rear for gaining experience before you start on a very large scale. On the contrary, you will want to begin with 100 layers in a year prior to starting on a large scale (how many of them will die and how many do you think will succeed)?
Therefore, you cannot start on your own when it comes to layers, it requires you to have an experienced partner in layers’ poultry farming before you start, only this will you be able to leverage on his skills and knowledge.
Long Term Revenue
Is broiler farming more profitable? Layers farming will in the end bring in extra revenue after laying off eggs compare to broilers; the chickens can be sold as meat which this kind of opportunity is not available in broiler. When the layers get old and the rate of their consumption is higher than that of egg produce, they should be sold and replace with new ones.
Finally, you can only determine which is more profitable between broiler and layer if you know the ideal marketing strategy you are to adopt, the demand and challenges of the two before you begin.
Nevertheless, broilers and layers farming business are both profitable and choosing any of the two depends greatly on those factors vividly explained above. You can earn enormously with any and your profit lies greatly on the market demand and numbers of chicken you can produce at a time.
Differences between broiler and layers farming – Which is more lucrative?
In what way broilers feed is different from layers? Both broiler chicken farming and layer birds production are are lucrative poultry farming ventures. However, they both deal with life so a single mistake is enough to wipe your entire flock. Before choosing to book for either broiler or pullets day old chicks, you should evaluate other factors apart from the evident cost implications. Although they need a shorter vaccination regimen, broilers responds negatively faster to less resistance to withstand shabby management practices.
Demand for chicken meat is comparatively steadier, glut is rarely experienced. There is more profit on Layers production in the long run as you can realise up to N7/bird daily as net returns at full production. Market for eggs is easier to find than for chicken meat if you don’t have a frozen food outlet. Cost of labour, medication and feeding is a major factor to compare. Within 7-8wks you would have finished a cycle of broiler production but you need to be financially stable to feed layers up to 18-20wks before you realise and a few more weeks before sales of egg is able to take care of their feeding.
For broiler, it is more cost effective to rear them on deep litter but layers need cages to restrict their movement for more conversion, to preserve egg in good condition, to eliminate health risks and to be able to manage litter easily considering the fact that they would be on the farm for many months.
Broiler vs. Layer Feed: Poultry Feed Formulation Methods For Broiler And Layer Birds
All in all, before choosing between broilers and layers as an investment choice in poultry production, you should assess:
1. Level of know-how
2. Plans for expansion
3. Amount of financial and human resources at your disposal
4. Available market
I’ll be writing more on this topic soon, comparing feeding, management and profitability of these two agribusinesses in finer details. This will assist those who want to know which is more lucrative between broiler production and raising layers birds.
Broiler Or Layers? – Make the best investment choice in poultry farming business.